Point Park baseball wins in extra innings, splits Day 1 of series at Rio Grande
March 5, 2017 at 8:30 a.m. ET
Logan Linder played the outfield and then came in to get the save in game two at Rio Grande. Photo by Sam Robinson.
RIO GRANDE, Ohio -- Point Park University baseball battled to a 5-4 victory in nine innings Saturday in game two at the University of Rio Grande to forge a split on the first day of the River States Conference, weekend series.
Richard Perez hit a two-run homer in the top of the ninth to provide the difference in the Pioneers' victory, which was scheduled for the usual seven innings. Edberg Dominguez came through with a game-tying single in the sixth to tie things up at 3-3 and eventually force extra innings.
Rio Grande had won the first game of the day 8-1 when it broke the game open with seven runs in the bottom of the sixth. The RedStorm had been held in check to that point but came up with six of their 10 total hits in that inning.
Point Park (6-4, 1-1 RSC) was down, 3-1, when it came to bat in the top of the sixth of game two. But they put together a rally, first by getting the first two batters on base and later by having the tying runs come home on a wild pitch and then Dominguez's clutch base hit.
Point Park's game two starter, Nolan Krivijanski, went a solid five innings in game two. He allowed five hits, racked up six strike outs versus no walks and only two of the three runs he gave up were earned.
Keenan Smith came on in relief and got the victory for the Pioneers. The senior from Deerfield Beach, Fla., is now 3-0 -- all in relief -- after pitching three scoreless innings and giving up only two hits. That got things to the ninth, when after Point Park had taken the 5-3 lead, Logan Linder came on to pitch the final inning and earn his first save.
Rio Grande got a couple of guys on in the last of the ninth, and an RBI groundout cut the score to 5-4. An intentional walk and a defensive indifference put runners at second and third with two outs, but Linder struck out Cody Blackburn to strand the winning runs.
It was a big final out to record because Blackburn was a big bat in the game one victory for Rio Grande. The RedStorm's seven-run inning had two big hits, one of which was a two-run double by Blackburn. Earlier in the inning, Dan Crozier produced a two-run single to break the tie and make it 3-1.
Point Park had its own chances to break open game one, albeit those happened earlier on. The Pioneers left eight men on base, all in the first four innings. But Rio Grande starter Dariyn Lewis was able to get out of a bases-loaded jam and later one with two on and none out. He went on to settle in and pitch 6.1 innings and gave up only one run, scattering six hits.
The Pioneers were able to come up with just one clutch hit, Stefan Mrkonja's RBI double to tie things at 1-1 in the fourth. Rio Grande had taken a 1-0 lead with an unearned run in the first.
Point Park's opening starter Addison Domingo (1-1) went 5.2 innings to take the loss. He had given up just one run and four hits through the first five innings before the RedStorm came through.
Point Park and Rio Grande finish the series on Sunday with a doubleheader starting at 12 p.m. Watch Live on Stretch Internet with live video: http://portal.stretchinternet.com/Rio. Live Stats will be provided by Dakstats: http://www.dakstats.com/WebSync/Pages/Webcasts.aspx?association=10