April 21, 2010
NILES, Ohio — The University of Pittsburgh baseball team racked up 17 hits en route to a 21-12 win over Youngstown State University here today at Eastwood Field in Niles, Ohio.
Kevin Dooley picked up his third win of the year after going six innings, yielding nine hits and seven runs. Joe Leonard paced the Panthers at the plate, falling just a home run short of his second cycle in the last week. Leonard was 4-for-5 from the plate with four RBI and four runs scored. Overall, seven Panthers recorded at least one RBI with David Chester and Travis Whitmore also adding four apiece.
The Panthers struck early, grabbing a 1-0 lead in the top of the first off a Leonard RBI double to left, scoring Zach Duggan who reached on a C.J. Morris error to start the game. Back-to-back walks to Kevan Smith and Whitmore loaded the bases before Cory Brownsten doubled to right-center field, clearing the bags and putting Pitt ahead 4-0 early on.
RBI singles by Leonard in the second and Whitmore in the third pushed the Panther lead to 6-0 heading into the bottom of the third.
After coasting through the first two innings, Dooley ran into trouble in the third. After a leadoff walk to Anthony Porter, Morris doubled to left field to put runners on first and second with one out. Derek Carr’s two-run single was followed by a Jacke Healey single and a Tom Clayton sacrifice fly, cutting the deficit to 6-3 through three innings played.
Pitt notched five in the fourth and six in the fifth, putting the game out of reach at 17-6. Duggan and John Schultz both walked before Leonard registered his third RBI base hit of the day, forcing YSU to turn to the pen in the fourth. Bill Turosky got Chester to fly out to center before Smith reached on a fielder’s choice and Whitmore jacked his third homer of the season, a three-run shot over the right-field wall.
With runners on second and third in the fifth with no outs, Leonard was intentionally walked to load the bases. After taking a first-pitch strike, Chester sent a Trent Wood offering over the left-field wall for his first-career grand slam. Ronald Sucre added a two-run single to left to round out the scoring in the Panther fifth.
The Penguins added one in the sixth and three in the seventh to close the gap to 17-10 before the Pitt offense added three in the eighth to bring the score to 20-10.
Pitt added one in the top of the ninth on a Schultz single to left, scoring Sucre to make it 21-10 before YSU added two in the bottom half of the ninth. The game marked the 14th time this season Pitt has scored at least 10 runs and the 31st time the Panthers have pounded out at least 10 hits.
Pitt will resume Big East Conference action this weekend with a three-game series at border rival West Virginia University. The Panthers and Mountaineers will open the weekend series on Friday, April 23 at 6 p.m. in Morgantown, W. Va.