The Slippery Rock baseball team traveled to Institute, West Virginia this past weekend to take on the West Virginia State Yellow Jackets in what was scheduled to be a four-game series, two taking place on Saturday and the other two on Sunday. The Rock suffered a tough loss in the early game on Saturday’s slate by a score of 3-2 in extra innings, before bouncing back and handing the Yellow Jackets a loss of their own in an impressive 9-2 effort. The series was cut short however as both games scheduled for Sunday were canceled due to inclement weather. Slippery Rock now sits at an overall record of 2-3.
Slippery Rock’s Chris Anastas came away from game one with a no-decision as he pitched six innings while surrendering two runs and five hits. The Rock’s number one pitcher was able to strike out 10 WVSU batters while only allowing a one walk over that stretch. Next came reliever Wyatt Daugherty who is beginning to prove once again just how reliable he can be, blanking the Yellow Jackets for the next three innings. Luke Trueman (0-1) then followed Daugherty but received the loss for Slippery Rock.
Frankie Jezioro continued his hot start to the season by going 3-4 in game one, who doubled and stole home plate for The Rock. Joe Sibeto went 2-4 as he registered a home run and a double, while Jon Kozarion was the third Rock hitter to register multiple hits, going 2-4 as well.
Slippery Rock was able to get on the board first in the third inning, courtesy of a Joe Campagna single that was able to score Jezioro from second base. Unfortunately, The Rock’s lead would be short lived as the Yellow Jackets would answer with a two-run home run in the bottom frame of the inning to give them a one run lead of their own.
The two teams would go back and forth for until the sixth inning, when Sibeto sent a ball over the fences, tying the game at 2-2. The game would remained tied until the bottom of the tenth inning when West Virginia State was finally able to close the door on the Green and White. With two runners on base, The Rock did not do themselves any favors as they walked the next two batters, allowing the game sealing run to score from third base.
In the second game of the day, Slippery Rock’s offense was the difference maker, as the Green and White shelled the Yellow Jackets for six runs in the seventh inning.
Tanner Stanz (2-0) was given the start for The Rock and had himself a day on the mound as well. In six innings of work, Stanz only allowed five hits and both runs that scored in that time were unearned. Ryan Tapp relieved Stanz of his duties in the seventh inning and ended the game in a hurry, sending the first and only three Yellow Jacket batters packing, giving Slippery Rock the win.
Once again, Jezioro had a stellar game at the plate, homering once, scoring twice and adding another RBI on his way to earning Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Athlete (PSAC) of the week honors. Ray Scala had three hits of his own on the day, scoring twice, with an RBI and a walk as well. Trueman took advantage of his first start as a position player at the collegiate level and had two hits with one run and an RBI.
The Green and White will now look to start to win consecutive games for the first time this season as they will now travel Cary, North Carolina to play Franklin Pierce University on Friday, March 8th. The first pitch is scheduled to be thrown at 3:30 p.m.