LEWISBURG, Pa. – Andrew Andreychik pitched his second career complete game shutout to lead the Bucknell baseball team to its first victory over Penn State in 16 years Sunday afternoon at a chilly Depew Field. The Bison won game one of the doubleheader 1-0 behind Andreychik’s strong pitching. Penn State took the win in game two, 6-2, scoring three unearned runs on four Bucknell errors.
Andreychik, who last year became the first Bison freshman to pitch a shutout since at least 1979, had a strong performance in the seven-inning game one Sunday as he struck out five, allowed just four hits and retired the final 11 hitters he faced to improve to 2-2 on the season. He retired the side in order in four of the game’s seven innings and did not walk a hitter as he lowered his season ERA to 3.12, best among Bucknell starters.
Penn State (10-13) starter Greg Welsh (0-4) nearly matched Andreychik as he yielded just three hits and retired the side in order in four of six innings. However, the Bison plated an unearned run in the bottom of the fifth that proved to be the winning score.
Anthony Gingerelli led off the fifth with a single through the left side and moved to second on a sac bunt by Justin Meier. Gingerelli advanced to third on a passed ball, while a walk to Mark Powell gave the Bison two on and one out. Ninth-place hitter Ryan Otis came to the plate and his squeeze bunt to the right side allowed Gingerelli to scamper home for the game’s lone run.
Bucknell’s (8-11-1) victory snapped a 21-game winning streak for Penn State in the series. The last time the Bison defeated the Nittany Lions was 1998.
Game two was in direct contrast to the efficient and well-played game one as Bucknell and Penn State combined for six errors and half of the contest’s eight runs were unearned. The Nittany Lions built an early 6-0 lead, and while the Bison bats came alive late, they could not chip away at the deficit enough as they plated single runs in the sixth and seventh innings.
Penn State scored the first run of the game in the top of the first when James Coates advanced around the bases by reaching on a dropped third strike, an error on a pickoff attempt, a balk and finally scoring on a ground out.
The Nittany Lions added four more runs in the second as they batted around and were helped by two errors.
An RBI single in the third by Tyler Kendall drove home Jim Haley, who had three hits in the game and made a number of impressive defensive plays at shortstop throughout the day. That was the final run for Penn State, which had just three of its 11 hits over the final six innings of play
Bucknell had six of its nine hits in the sixth, seventh and eighth innings, scoring both of its runs during that stretch. Joe Ogren drew a one-out walk in the sixth and later came around to score on a Gingerelli single to left. It was the team-best third hit of the day for Gingerelli, who had six hits in the four-game weekend series vs. Penn State.
Freshman Brett Smith got a two-out rally started in the seventh with an infield single. Corey Furman moved hit to second with a hard-hit single through the right side. Ogren followed with an RBI single through the left side.
Xavier Hammond (0-2) started game two for Bucknell and logged 5.0 innings. He was touched for 10 hits and six runs while striking out three. Mike Castellani (3.0 IP) and Tucker Rekucki (1.0) completed a scoreless weekend for the Bison bullpen, which did not allow in a run in 3.0 innings in Saturday’s doubleheader at Penn State.
Reliever Ryan Harper (1-0) earned the win by pitching 2.2 innings for the Nittany Lions, while Dakota Forsyth posted his first save after entering the game with the tying run on deck in the seventh and closing things out.
In 16 innings on Sunday, Bucknell’s pitching staff did not allow a walk. Penn State issued just two walks.
Sunday’s win vs. the Nittany Lions marked the second this year over a Big Ten team for the Bison. Bucknell defeated Northwestern 6-5 just over a week ago in Florida.
The Bison are scheduled to play a doubleheader at Binghamton Tuesday, March 25, at 2 p.m. Patriot League play will commence next weekend with a four-game home series vs. Navy at Depew Field.