NILES, OH - The State College Spikes fell twice to the Mahoning Valley Scrappers in a doubleheader on Wednesday night at Eastwood Field, with the Scrappers' 2-1 victory in game one and 1-0 victory in game two each coming in the bottom of the eighth inning.
Both contests were scheduled for seven innings, but went the extra distance before Mahoning Valley (14-23) plated the winning run. The opener ended on Paul Hendrix's bases-loaded walk, while the nightcap finished with Juan Herrera's bases-loaded sacrifice fly.
State College (18-17) was held two four hits on the night, two in each game. Jimmy Bosco notched the lone RBI for the Spikes with his single in the first game. David Washington also delivered a base hit in game one, while Mason Katz and Matthew Young each contributed a single in game two.
The second game was a pitchers' duel, with State College getting exceptional efforts from starter Nick Petree and reliever Andrew Pierce (0-2). Petree struck out five in three shutout innings, allowing one hit and one walk while retiring the last seven batters he faced.
Pierce, who was originally slated to start game two before a late switch, recorded seven strikeouts in 4 1/3 innings, the most for any Spikes pitcher in a single outing this season. The right-hander was tagged with the Scrappers' only run on a total of four hits and a walk.
Mahoning Valley plated the winning run in the second game following a leadoff single by Sicnarf Loopstok, a walk, a failed sacrifice bunt, and another walk to load the bases before Herrera's game-winning out.
In game one, Victor DeLeon (1-2) took the loss for the Spikes after allowing a leadoff walk to Cody Ferrell in the eighth. DeLeon then gave up a single to Claudio Bautista and intentionally walked Nellie Rodriguez after a wild pitch before his 3-2 delivery to Hendrix went high to give Mahoning Valley (13-23) the win. DeLeon allowed a run on a hit and walked three total over 1 1/3 innings.
Spikes starter Jimmy Reed went a career-long six innings in the no-decision, fanning three while yielding a run on seven hits and a walk. The run scored on Martin Cervenka's solo homer to lead off the fifth inning for the Scrappers.
Mahoning Valley reliever Harold Guerrero (2-0) picked up the game one victory with two scoreless innings in which he allowed just one walk and one hit batsman while striking out three. Manuel Carmona (2-2) notched the win in the second half of the twin bill with 2 1/3 innings in which he allowed no hits, but walked four batters and hit one. Carmona did not allow a run, though, thanks in part to five strikeouts.
Each team had a runner thrown out at the plate in the first game. The loss prolongs the Spikes' streak of road defeats to seven.
State College finishes up its three-game series at Eastwood Field with a 7:05 p.m. matchup against Mahoning Valley on Thursday. Right-hander Juan Bautista (1-2) gets the ball for the Spikes after recording his first win for the club on Friday against Lowell. The Scrappers are due to send right-hander Caleb Hamrick (1-5) to the hill.
After the road trip, the Spikes return home to Medlar Field at Lubrano Park for a two-game set against the Auburn Doubledays (Washington Nationals) on Friday and Saturday. Fans will be sure to love the appearance of Mountain Man from A&E's hit TV show Duck Dynasty, presented by ServiceMaster by Holobinko and Merry Maids on Friday night for the 7:05 p.m. game against Auburn.
Plus, the Spikes will wear special 1980's Cardinals-style jerseys for Saturday's 7:05 p.m. game, which will be up for bids in a Jersey-off-the-Back Auction to benefit the Children's Miracle Network. The auction and the spectacular post-game FIREWORKS show are presented by PSECU and ESPN Radio 1450.
Tickets for Friday and Saturday's games, as well as every Spikes home game on the 2013 slate, are currently on sale through the Spikes Box Office by calling (814) 272-1711 or by visiting in person. Fans can also buy and print single-game tickets by visiting StateCollegeSpikes.com.
Catch all of the action on Thursday via the Spikes Radio Network, presented by Penn State Sports Medicine, at 6:50 p.m. with Spikes Live, presented by Mount Nittany Health, on the air from Eastwood Field. The Spikes' radio broadcast can also be heard worldwide through the "Listen Live" link on StateCollegeSpikes.com, provided by 95.3 FM 3WZ.