ASTON, Pa. – Penn State Brandywine overcame a four-run deficit, but Penn State Wilkes Barre pushed across the game-winning run in the ninth inning to post a 5-4 Penn State University Athletic Conference victory on Friday night.
Wilkes Barre strung together five-straight hits and totaled six knocks during a four-run fourth inning that gave the visitors a 4-0 edge.
Brandywine steadily chipped away at the deficit, scoring runs during each of its next three at-bats. Joey Buoni (Chester Heights, Pa./Salesianum) roped a two-out triple to right field, scoring Kevin Roche (Malvern, Pa./Chaminade College Prep (Calif.)) and Brett Sheeran (Springfield, Pa./Springfield) with the Lions' first two runs.
One inning later, Matt Masi (West Chester, Pa./Cardinal O'Hara) walked with two outs, stole second, and came around to score when Brian Reynolds (Newtown Square, Pa./Marple Newtown) roped a single through the middle.
The Lions again scored with two outs in the seventh as John Gorgone (Ridley, Pa./Ridley) delivered a single that plated pinch-runner Max Palumbo (Springfield, Pa./Springfield) with the game-tying run.
Wilkes Barre took advantage of a Brandywine error in the ninth to retake the lead. The Lions put the first two batters on base during the bottom of the inning, but Francis Brodi retired the final three batters he faced to secure Wilkes Barre's victory.
Brodi earned his first save, while John Fagotti pitched 1.1 innings of relief to pick up his second win. Nate Forwood (Wilmington, Del./Mt. Pleasant) suffered the loss after allowing an unearned run in the ninth for Brandywine.
Joe Batcho (Wood-Ridge, N.J./Wood-Ridge) (3.0 innings) and John Grader (Denville, N.J./Morris Knolls) (1.0 inning) both held Wilkes Barre scoreless in relief appearances on the mound, while Bradley Ulmer (Newark, Del./St. George's Tech) went the first 4.0 innings, allowing four earned runs and striking out two.
Reynolds recorded two hits and reached base three times overall to lead Brandywine at the plate.
Brandywine and Wilkes Barre close out the series with a doubleheader Sunday afternoon beginning at 2:00 pm.