Panthers use early runs, dominant pitching for win over Big Red
FORT MYERS, Fla. – The Plymouth State University baseball team continued its hot start to the season with a 7-5 win over Denison University at the Player Development Complex on Tuesday morning.
The Panthers (5-1) got a stellar performance on the mound from sophomore Tyler Brown (Littleton, N.H.). The 6-0 righty threw a career-best seven innings while striking out 12 and allowing just two earned runs en route to the victory.
Plymouth State continued its recent trend of early scoring after jumping out to a 4-0 lead in the early innings. Junior Josh Goulet (Nashua, N.H.) walked to lead off before a single from sophomore Geoff Kayo (Londonderry, N.H.) put runners on first and second. An error by the Big Red pitcher allowed junior Ryan Richard (Berlin, N.H.) to reach and brought Goulet home. A single from senior Nate Frederick (Worcester, Mass.) drove in Kayo and a sacrifice put two runners in scoring position. After a strikeout, senior Luke Mancini (Scotia, N.Y.) and the ball-four wild pitch advanced Frederick to third and scored Richard. Mancini swiped second and another wild pitch scored Frederick from third base. The inning ended with a groundout, but the damage had been done.
Brown grinded through the first three innings, recording seven of the nine outs on K's, including four looking. PSU added two more runs in the top half of the fourth, extending the lead to 6-0. Sophomore Jimmy Zimolka (Londonderry, N.H.) walked and took second on a failed pickoff attempt. Two quick outs nearly ended the inning, but an RBI single off the bat of Goulet scored Zimolka and Kayo singled in the speedy Goulet after he stole second to get into scoring position.
Denison (7-4) finally broke through in the bottom of the frame. After an error at third and a single, the Big Red had runners at the corners. Senior Sam Frazen (Kansas City, Mo.) singled up the middle. A pickoff at second brought Denison down to its last out, but sophomore Brian McAuliffe (Tuckahoe, N.Y.) doubled to score Frazen from first.
Five more strikeouts for Brown halted a stalemate for Denison, but the Panthers couldn't help him out until the top of the eighth. Senior Mitch Sytulek (Raymond, N.H.) singled up the middle after a double from senior Ryan Boldwin (Manchester, N.H.) to put runners on the corners. Mancini was intentionally walked to force an out at any base, and it paid off as the Big Red infield got Boldwin out at home on a groundout to the left side of the infield. Senior Cam Ruziak (Sterling, Mass.) wouldn't allow the bases to be left loaded, and singled to score Sytulek. PSU left the bags loaded and it almost came back to haunt them.
Brown was relieved and the Big Red quickly took advantage with a three-run eighth. After a leadoff walk, senior Tanner Johnson (Jefferson, Wis.) singled to put runners at first and third. Frazen's RBI double cleared the bases before two Denison strikeouts seemed to extinguish the fire. An infield error, however, scored Frazen from second to end the inning with PSU leading 7-5.
Neither team scored in the final inning. Junior David Sampson (Bellingham, Mass.) struck out two in a perfect ninth inning to secure his first save and the Panther victory.
Kayo finished with a game-high four hits, scoring once with an RBI in the win. Goulet added a pair of singles as the Panthers banged out 11 base hits. Brown moved to 1-0 on the season.
Denison's Frazen led the team with two hits and two runs, as well as three of the five RBI in the Big Red loss. Senior Zack Huarte (Villa Park, Calif.) took the loss allowing six runs, two earned, on five hits and three walks over four innings.
PSU is back at it with a game against SUNY Old Westbury at 3:00 p.m.
– 30 –