PORTSMOUTH, Ohio (Baseball) – The Bears got a strong pitching performance in game one and offensive explosion in game two defeating Saint Francis, 2-1, and Fischer College, 12-4, on Monday afternoon at Branch Rickey Park.
Brady Knittel (SO/West Portsmouth, Ohio) claimed the win in game one. Knittel went six innings strong striking out two and allowing only one run and five hits. The Bears were led in game two by the bats of Conner Wilson (SR/San Diego, Calif.) and Chase Thurber (FR/Andover, Ohio) who each finished with 3 RBIs.
Game One: St. Francis
Shawnee State struck first in this one, scoring a run in the second inning thanks to a sacrifice fly from Wilson, allowing Mitchell Lendenski (SR/Loveland, Ohio) to score. Knittel looked strong early, only allowing two hits through the first three frames.
St. Francis was able to score in the fourth inning, tying the game at one. The Bears quickly reclaimed the lead off of an RBI single from Nick Rose (FR/Olentangy, Ohio), as Lendenski crossed the plate for the second time in the game. The fifth and sixth innings were quiet for both team. Brandon Bonar (SR/Chillicothe, Ohio) came in and shut the door in the seventh, claiming his third save of the season, as the Bears won, 2-1.
Game Two: Fisher College
The Bears fell behind early in the contest after a two-run second inning from the visiting Fisher College. SSU struck back in their half of the second on an RBI single from Thurber. Shawnee State found offensive success in the third, this started with RBIs from Lendenski and Wilson. Rose and Thurber both connected for two-run home runs. The Bears had a seven runs on seven hits in the third.
Fisher pushed a single run across the plate in the fourth, but Shawnee answered scoring four in the bottom half of the inning. The runs came off the bats of Wilson with a two-run homerun and Austin Hall (SR/Wheelersburg, Ohio) with an RBI single. The last run of the inning came when Freeman drew a walk with the bases loaded. The Bears walked away from this one with a 12-4 victory.
The Bears found success with the long ball, as Thurber, Rose and Wilson all finished with home runs.
The Bears return to action this Tuesday against Ohio University-Chillicothe and Cincinnati-Clermont. Game one of the doubleheader is slated for a 1 p.m. start.