March 4, 2016
Myers, Bini lead Wolverines to win in opener
BEREA, Ky. -- Junior right fielder Nolan Myers (Landisville, Pa./Hempfield) drove in the go-ahead run and freshman pitcher John Bini (Staten Island, N.Y./Xaverian) earned his first collegiate victory in relief as the Grove City College baseball team earned a 3-2 victory at Berea in their 2016 season opener on Friday evening.
Junior first baseman Matt Waugaman (Wexford, Pa./North Allegheny) collected two of Grove City's five hits, going 2-3 with a walk and a hit by pitch, while Myers, sophomore third baseman Drew Landis (Red Lion, Pa./Red Lion), and freshman Travis Auth (Medina, Ohio/Medina) each recorded an RBI.
The game remained scoreless through seven innings, but Grove City (1-0) broke the deadlock in the top of the eighth inning. Waugaman was hit by a pitch with one out, and consecutive walks from Landis and junior catcher Andy Fritz (Saxonburg, Pa./Knoch) loaded the bases. In a pinch-hitting role, Auth entered the game and flew out to deep left field, scoring Waugaman on the sacrifice to give the Wolverines a 1-0 lead.
The Mountaineers' (0-4) Tyler Plageman led off the bottom of the eighth with a triple and later scored on a Ron Overstreet groundout to even the score at 1-1, but Grove City would go back on top for good in the top of the ninth. With one out, sophomore center fielder Tyler Graham (Vandergrift, Pa./Kiski Area) was hit by a pitch, and then stole second and moved to third on a balk during the following at bat. Freshman shortstop Bobby Dulay (Youngstown, Ohio/Ursuline) would finish the at bat with a walk, giving the Wolverines runners on the corners. Myers then laid down a well-placed bunt, leaving the Berea defense with no play and allowing Graham to score to give Grove City a 2-1 lead.
Waugaman drew a walk during the following at-bat to load the bases once again, and Dulay would score what proved to be an important insurance run on a Landis sacrifice fly to right field to extend the lead to 3-1.
A leadoff hit batter gave Berea some late life, and a Josh Wilson sacrifice bunt and a Ryan Blevens single would allow Chase O'Conner to score, closing the gap to 3-2. Blevens, however, would be caught stealing during the next at-bat to give Grove City two outs, and, after a Chris Works single, Bini got Nathan Summey to ground out to second to seal his first win as a Wolverine.
Bini allowed just four hits and two runs while striking out five over five and two-thirds innings to earn the victory on the mound. Junior Cameron Lawson (Pittsburgh, Pa./North Hills) started and threw three and one-third scoreless innings for the Wolverines, allowing just one hit while striking out four and walking four.
Dating back to last season, Myers has now extended his hitting streak to 19 consecutive games.
The Wolverines will continue the series at Berea tomorrow afternoon, playing a pair of seven-innings games. Game one is slated to begin at noon.
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