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Dave Walkling came in and struck out five batters in two innings.
April 25, 2012
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State senior Sean Deegan (Readington, N.J.) made history on Wednesday night, as he hit a bases-clearing triple in the fourth inning to put the Nittany Lions on top for good, as they defeated the Kent State Golden Flashes by a score of 6-4. The triple by Deegan broke the school record, as he now has 14 on his career.
The senior finished the game with two hits, three RBI and one run scored. Freshman catcher JC Coban (Miami, Fla.) had a huge night for the Nittany Lions, going 3-for-4 with a run scored, raising his batting average to .301 on the season. Sophomore Tim Dunn (Newport Beach, Calif.) picked up the win with a solid 3.1 innings of relief. Junior Dave Walkling (Nanaimo, Canada) earned a two-inning save with five strikeouts.
Kent State picked up two runs in the first inning off Penn State starter Cody Lewis (Laguna Niguel, Calif.). Jimmy Rider, who went 5-for-5 in the game, drove in Evan Campbell to give the Golden Flashes an early 1-0 lead. An RBI single later in the inning by Alex Miklos gave Kent State a 2-0 lead. Four of Kent State's 19 total hits came in the first inning.
The Golden Flashes would increase its lead to 3-0 in the second inning. However, the Nittany Lions would respond in the bottom half. With freshman Aaron Novak (Ambler, Pa.) on second and Coban on first, a two-base failed pick-off attempt error by the catcher scored Novak to put the Nittany Lions on the board.
The big inning for Penn State came in the fourth. With two outs and nobody on, freshman JJ White (Lansdowne, Va.) walked, Coban singled and Searer walked to load the bases. Deegan ripped his record-breaking triple down the right field line off the wall to clear the bases. Sophomore Steve Snyder (West Chester, Pa.) followed with an RBI single to put Penn State up, 5-3.
Kent State would cut the lead to 5-4 in the sixth, but an RBI double by Novak to score senior Jordan Steranka (Pittsburgh, Pa.) in the seventh gave Penn State a 6-4 advantage.
In the top of the eighth inning, Kent State put the first two runners on and Walkling came in for relief. The junior had the slider working, as he struck out the side to escape the critical jam. Then in the ninth inning, Walkling would fan two more batters to pick up his first career save in a Penn State uniform.
Penn State now turns to a big weekend series at Medlar Field as it hosts Ohio State. This Friday, Penn State head football coach Bill O'Brien will throw out the ceremonial first pitch prior to the 6:05 contest. In addition, junior pitcher Steven Hill (Colleyville, Texas) will be honored prior to first pitch for throwing the first Penn State no-hitter since 1995 this past Saturday. Friday's contest will also feature Dollar Dog Night and postgame fireworks. Penn State baseball snapback hats will be Saturday's giveaway while supplies last. On Sunday, it will be PSU Pride Day.
Individual game tickets for Adult General Admission start at just $4 and just $2 for youth. Student tickets cost $2 as well. Single game tickets can be purchased at the Spikes' box office or via a link on the tickets page on GoPSUSports.com.
Follow Penn State baseball on Twitter: www.twitter.com/psubaseball.
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