PSU Baseball splits two games against Norwich

(Game 1 Box) (Game 2 Box)

           PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Plymouth State University and Norwich University split a non-conference baseball doubleheader Sunday afternoon at Panther Park, the host Panthers taking the opener, 10-1, and the visiting Cadets coming back to win the nightcap, 16-5.

           The Panthers scored five runs on six hits in the bottom of the first inning of the opener and never looked back, finishing with 10 runs on 15 hits.  Sophomore Mike Cappiello (Westfield, N.J.) and freshman Rew Wilson (Niantic, Conn.) had three hits apiece in the game, and sophomore Justin Campo (Londonderry, N.H.) cracked his first home run of the season.

           Freshman Jon Whalen (Attleboro, Mass.) recorded his first win of the season (1-0) for PSU, allowing only one unearned run in five innings while striking out four.  Sophomore Marcus Joyce (Scituate, Mass.) worked two innings of scoreless relief.

           Norwich managed only three hits in the first game, including doubles by junior Travis Dyke (Lewiston, Maine) and senior Rob Knox (Conway, N.H.).  Knox scored the Cadets’ only run in the sixth inning, coming home on an infield ground out after his double.

           The second game was a different story as Norwich scored 16 runs on 16 hits off PSU pitchers.  Sophomore Joe Sleeman (Rochester, N.Y.) and freshman Dustin Shimkus (Collinsville, Ill.) each went 4-for-5, with Sleeman scoring four runs and knocking in five and Shimkus cracking two home runs and driving in six.  Freshman Kase Cook (Sharpsburg, Ga.) also had three hits and an RBI and Knox reached base three times on a single, a double and a hit-by-pitch.

           The Cadets took a 7-0 lead with two runs in the first inning and five in the second.  It was 8-3 after three innings, and Norwich took a commanding 16-3 lead with eight more runs in the fourth inning.

           Junior Dan Eagan (Norwich, Conn.) recorded three hits and an RBI to lead the Panthers in the nightcap and classmate Bryant Lausberg (Somersworth, N.H.) had a pair of singles.

           Plymouth State, 6-22 overall, is right back at Panther Park on Monday to host Bates College in a non-conference game at 3:30 p.m.

           Norwich, which completes the regular season at 8-27, qualified for the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Tournament for the first time since 2005.  The sixth-seeded Cadets will travel to Providence, R.I., on Tuesday to face third-seeded Johnson & Wales University in a first round matchup.  The Cadets and Wildcats split the regular season doubleheader. 

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