YORK, PA – The PSU-Berks Lions walked by the York College Spartans 6-5 in a non-conference contest at a beautiful Jaquet Field on Thursday afternoon in York. The four Spartan pitchers in the game combined to walk nine batters in the game in leading to the setback.
The Spartans fall to 20-19 overall while the Lions improve to 11-21.
The game started with a milestone as senior Dustin Worthman (Tabernacle, N.J./Seneca) collected his 200th career hit with a single up the middle in the bottom of the first. He becomes the 10th Spartan to reach that career milestone.
The Spartans had two runners on in both the first and second innings but would not get on the board until the third. The Spartans' first run came on doubles from Colbe Herr (Hummelstown, Pa./Lower Dauphin) and Drew Frankenfield (Blue Bell, Pa./Wissahickon) in the third.
The Spartans pushed the lead to 3-0 in the fifth as Worthman singled up the middle to open the inning. After Herr lined out to left, Justin Cohen (Severn, Md./Old Mill) singled to center to push Worthman to second. Frankenfield then lashed his second double of the game to left center, scoring both Worthman and Cohen as the Spartan lead grew to three.
The Lions cut into the Spartan lead in the sixth as they knocked Spartan starter David Walker (Hanover, Pa./South Western) from the game. Walker surrendered a walk and a single to open the frame and both of those runners came around to score.
The Spartans pushed the lead back to two as Jimmy King (Frederick, Md./Frederick) doubled, moved to third on a throwing error and scored when Worthman flicked a single into left field with two outs.
York extended the lead to 5-2 when Frankenfield singled, stole second and came home on a Colin Porter (Hanover, Pa./South Western) double to right in the seventh.
The Lions then roared back off the Spartan bullpen in the eighth. Berks opened the inning with a walk and a Nick Vitelli double to right followed by a Ryan Tantala double down the right field line to score two. A bunt single followed and then Dan Gurganus (Prince Frederick, Md./Huntingtown) walked the bases loaded. Brad Dierolf lifted a sacrifice fly to left, tying the game at five. The Lions then took the lead when Christian Marcin hit into a force play at second, allowing Tim Grablewski to score the go-ahead run.
York had a chance to tie the game in the eighth as Andrew Hershey (Lancaster, Pa./Penn Manor) doubled to left center with one out. Worthman then hit a line drive to right for the second out of the inning. After a passed ball moved Hershey to third, Herr walked to put Spartans at the corners. After a pitching change, Cohen flied out to right to end the frame.
The Spartans opened the ninth with a lead off walk to Frankenfield. The Green and White could not get the sacrifice bunt down and paid for it when Porter banged into a double play to erase Frankenfield and essentially end the Spartan threat. Marcin, who came into the game in the eight to face Cohen, got the final out of the game on a fly ball as the Lions captured the first-ever meeting between the two schools.
The Lions only had seven hits in the win with Tantala going 3-for-5 with two RBI and a run scored. Vitelli added two hits while Grablewski also had two hits. Leftfielder Clint Faust ended the game 0-for-1 but he drew four walks and scored twice for the Lions.
Worthman and Frankenfield powered the Spartan offense as they each had three hits. Frankenfield drove in three and scored another run while Worthman added a run scored and an RBI. Herr and King contributed two hits each to the 14-hit Spartan attack.
John Bonino hung in for the Lions as the left-hander tossed seven innings, allowing five runs, four earned, on 13 hits with a strikeout and a walk. He earned the win for his efforts as he improved to 1-0. Marcin recorded the save as he tossed 1.1 innings, allowing just the one walk to Frankenfield in the ninth.
Walker gave the Spartans a solid start as he tossed five-plus innings five days after tossing 6.2 innings in the CAC tournament. Walker allowed two runs on two hits with three strikeouts and five walks. He didn't get a decision in the loss. Junior Brad Wenzel (Blandon, Pa./Fleetwood Area) pitched for the first time since April 7 as he has been battling an injury. Wenzel tossed two innings, allowing three runs on three hits with a walk and a strikeout. Gurganus suffered the loss as he allowed a run on one hit with two walks and a strikeout in his first relief appearance of the year. Chris Wolf (Staten Island, N.Y./Moore Catholic) threw the ninth and allowed a walk and a hit before getting out the frame without any damage.
The Spartans head out on the road on Sunday as they travel to Ithaca for a non-conference contest. First pitch is set for 2:00 pm in New York.