UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State (18-14, 5-4) split a doubleheader with Big Ten-leading Michigan State (21-6, 5-1) on Sunday to get back to a winning record in conference play.
After dropping the first game of the day the Nittany Lions rallied from one run down in the ninth to win the series finale in walk-off fashion, 7-6. Jordan Bowersox was the hero of the day, knocking in Jim Haley for the game-winning run thanks to an error by the MSU second baseman.
With two outs and runners on first and second, Tyler Kendall laced a single to right field on the first pitch he saw that drove in Nick Riotto to tie the game at six.
"I was sitting on off-speed. They had been starting me off low and outside, but I took good at-bats all day with nothing to show for it," said Kendall. "I was just happy to get the next guy up. That's all I was trying to do."
That next guy up happened to be Bowersox, who ended the game with one swing.
"He threw me a fastball up and I just chopped in on the ground," Bowersox said. "I actually tripped coming out of the box. Luckily he threw it a little high and I was safe."
Riotto extended his hitting streak to nine games with a three-hit performance in game two. He also scored three runs and recorded two RBIs to lead the Blue and White.
Haley also smacked three hits in the game and scored the winning run. Riotto (.330) and Haley (.349) lead the team in batting average in 2016 and continue to produce at the plate.
Jack Anderson picked up the win in game two to improve his record to 3-1 on the year. He threw three innings in relief of Justin Hagenman, who struck out four and allowed three earned runs in six innings on the hill.
"He always battles," Anderson said of Hagenman. "He's learning more and more every start he takes. He's always battling out there. He's always shooting knees and mixing velocities. He's a stud and we all have a ton of confidence in him."
The Nittany Lions committed a season high five errors in the contest, including two in each of the sixth and eighth innings.
"We got to take care of the ball better," said head coach Rob Cooper. "We didn't value the baseball at all. We got to move our feet. We got to know when to not throw a baseball. No excuses, we got to play better defensively."
Penn State out-hit the Spartans 9-6 in the first game, but MSU capitalized on its few opportunities to pull out a 5-2 win.
Sal Biasi started on the mound for Penn State and lasted five innings, surrendering only one hit but allowing three runs. Biasi struck out six but suffered the loss to drop his record on the season to 3-4.
Nick Distasio and Marko Boricich each added two innings of relief and gave up a combined five hits and two runs.
James Coates and Ryan Sloniger each tallied two hits in game one. Seven different Nittany Lions recorded a hit in a balanced effort.
Freshman Connor Klemann, in just his third start of the season, singled in the second inning to score Jordan Bowersox for his third RBI on the year. MSU bounced back with an unearned run in the fourth inning to tie the game at one.
In the fifth, Haley knocked in Ryan Sloniger with a sacrifice fly for his team leading 21st RBI on the season. Michigan State scored two runs in both the seventh and eighth innings and held on to win the second game in the three game series.
The Nittany Lions return to Medlar Field at Lubrano Park Wednesday to face Bucknell at 6:30 p.m. Penn State will then head to Evanston, Ill. for a three game series over the weekend against conference foe Northwestern.