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May 19, 2012
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Despite taking an early 2-0 lead, Penn State was held hitless for the final four innings in a 9-2 loss to the Michigan State Spartans on Saturday afternoon. With the loss, Penn State will have the No. 3 overall seed in the 2012 Big Ten Tournament and will play on Wednesday at 3:35 p.m. against a TBD opponent.
The Lions, who won three Big Ten road series for the first time since 1996, got on the board early with a two-run homer by senior Joey DeBernardis (Lake Zurich, Ill.) in the first inning. That would be one of just three Penn State hits on the day. Michigan State's David Garner was strong on the mound, going 6.1 innings and striking out nine.
In the top of the first inning, junior Luis Montesinos (Miami, Fla.) worked a one-out walk that would set things up for DeBernardis later on. The senior buried an 0-1 pitch over the left field wall to give the Nittany Lions a 2-0 lead.
The Spartans added three runs in the bottom of the second and took a 3-2 lead. Despite giving up five runs, junior John Walter (Haddonfield, N.J.) did have his bright spots, striking out nine batters in a very talented Spartan lineup.
Michigan State would add to the damage in the bottom of the seventh with a two-spot. The big hit in the inning came on Ryan Jones' RBI triple. Jones, who was a First Team All-Big Ten selection last season, picked up two hits and drove in three while scoring twice in his last game at McLane stadium.
The Spartans capitalized again in the eighth inning, scoring four runs on the Nittany Lion bullpen to increase their lead to 9-2.
Penn State awaits the determination of its Big Ten Tournament foe pending what happens in the Ohio State-Indiana game. Follow Penn State baseball on Twitter: www.twitter.com/psubaseball for complete updates throughout the evening.
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