The State College Spikes (22-24) managed just four hits and a lone run in a 4-1 loss to West Virginia on Friday night to even the series at a game apiece.
West Virginia (24-23) scored four runs off nine hits against Spikes pitcher Carson Cross in 51/3 innings.
The Black Bears plated a runner early after Mitchell Tolman doubled to left field and Ty Moore sent him in off a single to center. After getting shut out in the first two innings, the Spikes answered with a run of their own courtesy of an RBI single from Craig Aikin to score Jesse Jenner.
State College was blanked in the next six frames, while West Virginia scored again in the fifth off an RBI single by Casey Hughston that sent in Albert Baur.
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Cross allowed the Black Bears two more runs in the sixth inning. Logan Hill hit an RBI single that turned into a throwing error and sent in Tolman, and Hill himself scored on an RBI single from Daniel Arribas. Cross was then pulled for Tyler Bray, who managed to hold West Virginia to just two hits and no runs in the final 21/3 innings with one strikeout.
State College loaded the bases with two outs in the eighth inning but still couldn’t score, and Black Bears reliever Cesilio Pimental struck out the first two batters in the ninth and grounded out a third to seal the win.
The Spikes will play for the series win at West Virginia on Saturday at 7:05 p.m.
Notes: Thursday’s win was the first for the Spikes in extra innings this season. … State College is 6-2 on turf this year, with a sweep of Hudson Valley and a 3-2 record at West Virginia. … Landon Beck, who struck out eight batters over 52/3 innings on Thursday, is now second in the leaguewith 44 strikeouts.