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Penn State Baseball Wins Two Of Three Over UMass

Penn State baseball (5-9) won its series against the University of Massachusets (2-4-1), taking two of the three games.

The Nittany Lions were routed in their second match in an 11-4 loss, but their 1-0 and 10-6 victories in games one and three made up for their poor play in the second game. Overall, Penn State was outscored 17-15 but won’t mind coming home with two more wins.

Game One

Travis Luensmann got the start for Penn State and put together a solid performance, allowing five hits in over four innings pitched. Penn State’s four relievers allowed two hits in twenty fewer pitches.

The Nittany Lions dodged a bullet in the first inning, avoiding scores after UMass put three men on base. The game stayed dull for a few innings after that, as both teams failed to score after two innings.

Penn State then saw its first hit in the second inning but really started churning its offensive gears in the third inning, generating five hits and three players around the bases to take a 3-0 lead.

The only other runs for the Nittany Lions came in the fifth inning. Penn State allowed three runs in the top of the inning but responded with seven of its own. The only other scoring of the game came in the next inning, when Massachusets scored three. The game finished with the score at 10-4 in favor of the Nittany Lions.

Game Two

Penn State was unable to follow Friday’s performance with another win to take home its series early, as it fell 11-4 Saturday afternoon. Tommy Molsky, who has not won with Penn State this year, got the start on the mound, throwing 3.2 innings and allowing six hits and seven runs.

The team started off with an unlucky defensive top of the first inning. After Molsky walked his first batter, the defense allowed an error with two outs, and a single turned into an RBI for UMass. Things didn’t get much better for the Nittany Lions after that. UMass scored in all but two innings on Saturday, while the Penn State offense couldn’t get its runners all the way around the bases.

Penn State’s failures didn’t come from its bats — it had only one less hit than UMass — the team just couldn’t get the final hit to get a man to home plate. In both the third and the fourth innings, Penn State left three men on base while scoring just one run between the two innings.

The Nittany Lions’ only other runs came too late, as they put together three runs in the ninth inning. However, by this point, UMass had already scored their 11 runs, and Penn State just wasn’t ready for a 10 run comeback.

Game Three

Mason Mellott got the start on the mound for the Nittany Lions’ last game and had a solid outing. He allowed no runs over his five-inning stretch and only allowed one hit and one walk before heading to the dugout.

As a whole, the game was quiet. The only run came in the first inning when Matt Wood hit a home run. Massachusets was never able to get an offensive grip on the game, recording just one hit. Penn State, who notched eight hits, would have liked to take more than just one run, but settled for the 1-0 victory to win the series.

Takeaways

  • Penn State needs a deeper bullpen. Molsky’s performance on Saturday, and the two losses that occurred before that, show that the Nittany Lions need to reevaluate at the position.
  • The Nittany Lions also need more consistent hitting. All of Penn State’s runs came in bunches, as there was no game with runs in more than two innings. In the end, nothing matters but the number on the scoresheet, but it’s not healthy to rely on a seven-run inning to save the team.

What’s Next

Penn State returns to Happy Valley for some weekday action against Niagara. The games will be played Tuesday and Wednesday, each at 5:00 p.m. They can both be streamed on BTN+.

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About the Author

Joe Lister

Joe is a junior journalism major at Penn State and Onward State's managing editor. He covers Penn State football, among other Penn State sports. He also listens to Mac Miller more than you. If you want to find him, Joe's usually watching soccer with his shirt off or at the gym with his shirt on. For dumb stuff, follow him on Twitter (iamjoelister). For serious stuff, email him ([email protected]).

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