PITTSBURGH, Pa. – The Penn State Behrend baseball team topped Penn State Altoona 9-4 in the Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference (AMCC) playoffs, but then fell to Pitt-Greensburg 15-11 later in the day, ending their season.
The Lions (25-17) battled adversity in an elimination game against the Penn State Altoona Lions (17-21), but unfortunately could not rally past the Bobcats (26-12) in their second meeting of the AMCC playoffs.
Against the Lions, senior David Boehme (Venetia, PA/Seton-La Salle) registered his 150th RBI of his career after going 2-for-5 with two doubles and an RBI.
Ian Taylor (Wexford, PA/Vincentian Academy) had himself a day against Altoona. He went 4-for-5 from the plate in the game, recording three RBIs, while Scott Sada (Saegertown, PA/Saegertown) hit 2-for-3 with two runs and an RBI.
Alex Hajduk (Cranberry Township, PA/Seneca Valley) pitched a complete game against the Lions, picking up his eighth win of the season. On the bump, he gave up four runs on 10 hits while also fanning seven batters.
Behrend got the bats rolling early in the branch-rival matchup. Sada got things going with a single through the left side. Boehme then stepped up and smacked a double down the left field line that sent Sada home for the first run of the game. The next batter, Braden Paulinellie (DuBois, PA/DuBois) drove in Boehme from second base from a single to center field, making the score 2-0 after one.
They got back at it in the fourth inning. Justin Foreman (Oakdale, PA/South Fayette) led the inning off with a double down the left field line. Later in the inning, after Foreman advanced to third from a sacrifice fly, Holden Stevanus (Erie, PA/Cathedral Prep) hit a double to right field that sent Foreman home.
Taylor then singled to center, sending in both Zach Murray (Pittsburgh, PA/Baldwin) and Stevanus, who reached base from being hit by a pitch.
Penn State Altoona scored a pair of runs in the top of the fifth, but Behrend responded with a run in the fifth and two in the sixth to maintain an 8-2 after six. Behrend scored one more while Altoona notched two more to end the game at 9-3.
In the second meeting against Pitt-Greensburg, it was a battle for an AMCC Championship appearance.
It looked promising for the Lions in the early goings of the game. After scoring one run in the opening inning, Behrend added two more in the second to hold a 3-0 lead.
In the third, Murray lashed a triple to left center that scored Foreman. Stevanus then hit a sacrifice fly that drove in Murray.
However, the Bobcats offense started to rally. In the second inning, five singles aided in Greensburg scoring four runs to erased the three-run deficit and generate a 4-3 lead of their own.
In the third, Tyler Holland led the inning off with a solo shot to left field to keep it rolling for Greensburg. They tallied another run in the inning from a balk.
From there it was a back and forth battle. Behrend registered two runs in the fourth followed by three in the fifth to keep themselves in the game. Murray recorded a couple RBIs in those two innings with a single and double, while Taylor and Foreman posted an RBI each.
Just as the Lions gained momentum, the Bobcats shut the door. Four runs in both the fourth and fifth innings made the score 14-8, and a little out of reach for Behrend.
Despite the four-run deficit, the Lions continued to battle. In the sixth, after Mason McGuire (Pittsburgh, PA/Upper St. Clair) doubled and Sada was walked, Paulinellie singled down the left field line to knock in two runs.
However, the two runs in the sixth were not enough. Greensburg added another run in the seventh to extend the lead back to five.
Behrend scored one more run in the eighth, which ended the scoring in the game.
In the top of the eighth, Sada singled through the left side to post his 200th hit of his career. He ended the game batting 1-for-3 with an RBI.
Murray led the charge in the hard fought game, hitting 4-for-5 with four RBIs and two runs. Foreman and Paulinellie each posted three hits in the game. Paulinellie also notched three RBIs as well.
Phil Myers (DuBois, PA/DuBois Central Catholic) is charged with the loss in the game. He threw for 3.1 innings, giving up nine runs and nine hits with three K's.
The Lions closed out their season with a 25-17 overall record with a 12-6 record in conference.