Danny Bailey – Staff Writer
Clarion University baseball team faced off against the University of Pittsburgh – Johnstown (UPJ) in a four game series on April 21-22.
The Golden Eagles came away from the affair with one win and three losses to bring their season record to 10-25 and 4-16 in PSAC.
The first two games were played in Butler, Pa. at the Kelly Automotive Park on Friday.
The Golden Eagles were swept in the two game series with scores of 1-3 and 0-16.
In the first game, Clarion pitcher Kane McCall allowed nine hits, but only allowed one run while the remaining two were unearned because of errors, all of which came in the first inning.
McCall and the rest of the Golden Eagles recovered defensively as they held UPJ scoreless for the remainder of the game.
Clarion answered back when Dillon Wolbert hit a ball up the middle for a double.
John Finke drove Wolbert home with a single up the middle.
However, it wasn’t enough for Clarion to come back. Afterward, UPJ picked up where they left off in the second game.
Just like the first game, the team knocked in three runs during the first two innings of play.
They then proceeded to lay the hammer down on Clarion during the fourth were they totaled six runs, one of which was a three-run home run.
Clarion could not find a response to the onslaught as UPJ continually scored in the remaining innings.
The Clarion pitching staff let UPJ get 17 hits which translated to 16 runs.
Dillon Wolbert, Austin Mike and Matt Kamenicky were the only Golden Eagles to get hits for the team.
The remaining two games were played in Johnstown on UPJ’s home turf, where they continued to flex its offensive might as they again dominated Clarion.
Clarion led off the scoring when they found a constant stream of walks. Mitch Holmberg was hit by a pitch while Tyler Falk and Joey Lopez walked.
Thomas Connell connected on a hit which sent Holmberg home.
UPJ found success in the opening innings as they totaled eight runs.
UPJ kept Clarion silent until Lopez was able to hit an RBI double off of Wolbert, but that was it for Clarion.
The game went on for a final score of 2-11.
Clarion did not give up after three losses.
The team was able to leave Johnstown with a win in the fourth game.
In the beginning, UPJ continued with its early offense when they knocked in three runs to make the score 3-0 in the first.
Clarion stopped the bleeding in the third.
Brady Andrews smacked a two-run single to tie up the score at three.
UPJ would not let Clarion upset them, so they responded immediately with a four-run inning in the bottom of the third, making the lead 7-3.
Clarion found a way to score five in the fourth when Lopez hit a double to send home Holmberg and Kamenicky.
Wolmbert hit a home run to send Lopez in as well.
Finally, Kamenickey scored the final and game-winning run on a walk-off walk by Lopez.
Even though Clarion lost the series, it was not swept. The remaining schedule includes five more games, including Senior Day in Clarion on April 29.