Portsmouth, Ohio – Shawnee State baseball split the last two games of the Al Oliver Classic on Sunday afternoon, falling in game one to Madonna (Mich.) 7-4, and defeating Madonna 5-4 in game two.
Game one would see Madonna take a 3-0 lead, with Taylor Grzelakowski delivering the big blow with an RBI double. However, the Bears would immediately hit back to tie the game in the bottom of the third. Nick Rose (SO/Olentangy, Ohio) would ground out to third to drive in Blake Marshall (SO/Lexington, Ky.), and with Brandon Reaman (SR/Dayton, Ohio) on third base, Chase Thurber (SO/Andover, Ohio) would hit a two-run home run to tie the game.
The Bears would take the lead in the bottom of the fifth when Brady Knittel (JR/West Portsmouth, Ohio) singled in Christian Helton (SO/Lexington, Ky.). Shawnee State would hold their 4-3 lead until the top of the seventh, when Madonna would rally to score four runs with two outs. Grzelakowski did the most damage again, hitting a two-run single to give Madonna the lead. Shawnee State would get runners to second and third in the bottom of the seventh but would strand them there to end the game.
Madonna's offense would pick up where they left off in game two as they scored one in the top of the first, second and fifth to take a 3-0 lead. Mike Watson (JR/Niles, Ohio) would get a run back for Shawnee State with an RBI single in the bottom of the fifth, but Madonna would score again in the top of the sixth to make it 4-1.
Shawnee State would again rally in the bottom of the sixth. After Thurber reached on a single, Nick Rose would triple him in to right to make the score 4-2. Helton would drive in Rose with a single, making the score 4-3. Watson would double to get Helton to third, but two Cliff Landess strikeouts would end the threat.
The Bears would walk off in the bottom of the seventh. Brandon Reaman would start the inning with a single, and JT Boggs (JR/South Shore, Ky.) would bunt for a base hit to put Reaman at second. Matt Dvorscak (JR/Whiting, Ind.) would pinch run for Boggs. Thurber would bunt for a hit of his own to load the bases with nobody out, and Nick Rose would end the game with a two-run double to right field, driving in Reaman and Dvorscak to end the Bears' eight game losing streak.
Todd Jones got the win for Madonna in game one, with Joe Spano (FR/Sunrise, Florida) getting the loss. Cliff Landess got the save with a scoreless seventh inning. Mike Watson would pick up the win in game two, throwing one inning of scoreless relief for Shawnee State. Landess was hit with the loss.
With the split, Shawnee State's record moves to 4-14 on the year. Madonna is now 10-9 on the year.
Shawnee State are back in action on Wednesday, March 8th when they play at #22 Indiana University-Southeast. First pitch is scheduled for 2:00pm.