The Slippery Rock University baseball team (7-6 overall, 0-2 PSAC) dropped both games in its Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) opener against Mercyhurst University (8-0 overall, 2-0 PSAC) Sunday, falling 2-1 in game one and 4-1 in game two.
“Mercyhurst is one of our biggest competitors and we feel like we match up really well with them,” Rock head coach Jeff Messer said. “We can’t really make any excuses. We were one pitch away from winning the first game and it just didn’t go our way.”
SRU jumped out to an early lead in the first inning of game one as redshirt sophomore Logan Brown singled in sophomore Preston Falascino from second base.
Mercyhurst redshirt sophomore pitcher Colin McKee threw all seven innings for the Lakers, surrendering just one run and striking out nine.
Senior Ryan Oglesby was the starting pitcher for Slippery Rock in game one.
Oglesby was able to keep Mercyhurst off the board for 6.2 innings and was on his way to a complete game shut out before the Lakers had seventh inning two-out rally to beat Slippery Rock with a walk-off win.
Oglesby struck out five on six hits and was credited with his first loss of the season.
“Ryan pitched his heart out and really just pitched an outstanding baseball game,” Messer said. “We had opportunities to score more than just one run and we didn’t do that, so I just feel bad for Ryan because he competed so well in that game.”
Junior Alex Bell gave SRU the lead in game two as he scored from third on a passed ball in the second inning.
The Rock’s offense was held quiet the rest of the game by Mercyhurst senior Jon Klein, who earned his second win of the season.
Junior Jake Hall came in the game midway through the seventh inning to earn his second save of the year.
Senior Rock pitcher Kyle Schneider allowed just one run through five innings, but surrendered three in the bottom half of the sixth to seal the win for the Lakers.
Schneider allowed six hits throughout the game, while striking out four.
Despite earning his first loss of the season, Schneider still leads the SRU pitching staff with a 0.78 earned run average.
“Kyle Schneider has continued to pitch very effectively for us,” Messer said. “I don’t think he was as particularly as sharp as he has been in his first two appearances, but we just didn’t take advantage of our opportunities on offense to get him the win.”
Slippery Rock continues PSAC play this weekend with a four-game home and away series with Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
Games one and two will be played in Slippery Rock on Saturday, and the first pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m.