The Slippery Rock baseball season came to an end Thursday after the Rock lost their playoff game in extra innings against nationally ranked Millersville University by a score of 3-2.
Junior Kyle Schneider started the game for Slippery Rock. Schneider pitched for five and one third innings, allowing two runs on eight hits. He was replaced by senior Ryan Oglesby in the sixth inning, and Oglesby lasted one and two thirds innings allowing no runs on just one hit. Senior John Kovalik entered the game for the Rock in the eighth inning. Kovalik pitched a strong three and two thirds innings into extra innings, but lost the game after surrendering an RBI sacrifice fly in the bottom of the eleventh inning.
The game was scoreless until the Rock struck first in the sixth inning. Senior Will Kengor, who singled to leadoff the inning, scored from third after a Millersville’s junior pitcher Chris Murphy threw a wild pitch. Millersville responded in the bottom of the sixth to take a 2-1 over Slippery Rock, but Rock senior Kevin Jovanovich answered in the top of the seventh with a clutch leadoff homer to tie the game at two. The Rock continued to threaten by getting the bases loaded, but Millersville’s Murphey was able to get out of the inning without further damage being done.
The Rock’s season will end with a 25-20 overall record win-loss record. Will Kengor, who was named Pa. State Athletic Conference Western Division Athlete of the Year, led the Rock’s offense by hitting .415 with 71 total hits including 12 doubles, four triples, and two home runs. Kengor also led the team in RBI’s with 30. Kevin Jovanovich closed out his career at Slippery Rock by hitting .328 during the regular season with three home runs, not including the home run he hit against Millersville on Thursday. Junior Adam Urbania made a huge impact on the Slippery Rock offense since transferring to the Rock in the fall. Urbania hit .331 with 23 RBI’s, a total of 50 hits which included 11 doubles, two triples and one home run.
Relief pitcher John Kovalik ended his collegiate career with 1.32 earned run average and a 4-1 win-loss record during the regular season. Kovalik also struck out 28 opposing batters and allowed only five earned runs on the year. Junior Kyle Schneider led the Rock’s pitching staff with 40 strikeouts on the year. Schneider finished the year with a 3.09 ERA in exactly 70 innings of work.
The Rock baseball team finishes the year with a 25-20 record (PSAC record 14-14).