Baseball sweeps Ohio Christian with ease, look to take on RSC rival IU-Southeast

Currently first place in the RSC standings with a month left in 2022 season

Written By Mason Strawn, Co-Sports Editor

The men’s baseball team continued to cruise through the opposition this week, with the Pioneers taking on and sweeping River State Conference (RSC) rival Ohio Christian University in a three game road series. 

The three game sweep helps put Point Park at 21-7 on the season, with an outstanding 11-1 in-conference record. With the wins continuing to roll in, the Pioneers currently sit in first place in the RSC and are currently the only team in the conference with single digit loses. 

Game one of the three game series took place on Friday, April 1 with the seven inning match up turning into a blowout late into the game. OCU would score the first run of the game, bringing in their only run of the contest with a single in the bottom of the first inning. Point Park tied the game back up though in the following inning with an RBI single from senior infielder Carlos Sanchez, bringing the game to 1 a piece. Senior utility man Gianmarco Marcelletti put the Pioneers ahead for good in the top of the third, mashing a solo shot and putting Point Park ahead 2-1. A sac fly in the fifth extended their lead, before an offensive explosion of 10 runs in the top of the seventh blew the game wide open. The Pioneers ended the contest with a 14-1 victory, walking away with 15 hits while keeping the errors department clean with zero. 

Junior starter Easton Klein would get the start for Point Park, continuing to work his magic this season with a complete seven innings while giving up five hits and a single run. He would also collect eight strikeouts in the performance.

Marcelletti led the offense, going three-for-five with two runs and two RBI’s. Fellow senior infielder Edwin De La Rosa would collect two hits in three at-bats, while bringing in two RBIs and a walk to help in the offensive onslaught. 

Game’s two and three would be back-to-back on Saturday, April 2. Point Park would once again bring the offense later in the game, with the Trailblazers gathering a run in the first and second innings to go up 2-0. A two-run double by Marcelletti and an RBI error by senior outfielder Ed Pfluger would help put the Pioneers ahead 3-2 in the top of the third, a lead Point Park would not give up. Three more runs in the top of the fifth extended Point Park’s lead even further at 6-2, with a run in the seventh and another three in the eighth, helping the Pioneers blow the game open at 10-2 for the final score. 

Sophomore starter Joathan Rivera would get the nod in game two, going seven innings while giving up nine hits, but keeping the damage minimal with only two runs given up while striking out five and walking none. Junior Jose Moreno would relieve Rivera, pitching a clean eighth inning, while sophomore John Hawley would come in to close out the ninth, striking out one to end game two. Marcelletti continued his offensive explosion, going four-for-five with four runs and four RBI’s.

Game three was a much closer matchup between the two RSC rivals, with Point Park coming out and scoring the first runs of the ball game for the first time in the series. The Pioneers would put up two runs in the top of second, thanks in part to a De La Rosa RBI single and an RBI double by sophomore infielder Isaac Santana, to help put them ahead 2-0. The game would stay that way until the bottom of the sixth, when OCU would respond with 2 runs of their own to put the game at 2 a piece heading into the seventh inning, which was the final inning of the contest. The game winning run would be scored in the following inning, with runners on second and third in the top of the seventh. Marcelletti scored the game winning run after running out an error by the Trailblazers first baseman, scoring De La Rosa to put the Pioneers ahead 3-2. The Pioneers would then put down the final three Trailblazers batters in order to end the game and sweep the series. 

Senior starter Jonathan Pacheco would toe the rubber for game three, going five-and-a-third innings while giving up seven hits and two runs. He would also strike out five and walk none. Senior closer Leo Diaz would come in for the multi-inning save, going one-and-two-thirds innings while only giving up a single hit and walking one, while also striking out two. The Pioneers would only collect four hits, but would only commit one error, helping to keep down any form of offense from the Trailblazers. 

The Pioneers continued the action on Monday, April 4, weather permitting, with a home series against NAIA Fisher College. Point Park will then head on the road again for a trip to New Albany, Indiana, where they will play number 17 ranked Indiana University Southeast. The Pioneers will play the Grenadiers on Friday, April 8 and a doubleheader on Saturday, April 9. Home games will be streamable through the Point Park athletics website.