MSU Drops Friday’s Opener at Penn State
King goes 3-for-4 with RBI in return to action
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Michigan State baseball suffered defeat at the hands of Penn State Friday evening at a rainy PSU Medlar Field at Lubrano Park in the opener of the three-game weekend series, 13-1.
MSU slid to 16-24 overall and 7-8 in Big Ten Conference action, while PSU is now 10-28 overall and 2-17 in B1G play. Despite Friday’s loss being the Spartans’ second-straight in the series, Michigan State has won eight of the last 11 against Penn State and still lead the all-time series, 52-36.
In addition to taking on the Nittany Lions, the Spartans also battled rain all evening, including some downpours.
“We’ve just got to be ready to go out and play tomorrow. We couldn’t stop the bleeding there in the third and fourth innings,” MSU head coach Jake Boss Jr. said. “I think our guys continued to play hard, but when you get behind 13-0 after four innings, it’s a tough road. Offensively we weren’t very good today. We need to have more competitive at bats. We got ourselves out early in the count too often today with tentative swings, and that’s not how we practiced, and not how we do things around here, so we’ve got to some of the fundamentals at the plate especially tomorrow.”
Due to inclement weather in the forecast, Sunday’s single game has been moved to follow Saturday’s game and the doubleheader will start at 2 p.m.
“We get to play two tomorrow so we’ll be back at it tomorrow. The guys will be ready to play. They’ve done a nice job of preparing all year long,” Boss said. “This one hurts; it’s embarrassing to get beat 13-1, but at the same time, the only thing we can do about it is get ourselves ready to compete tomorrow.”
Freshman shortstop Ryan King was 3-for-4 with an RBI in his return to action after missing the previous four games due to injury. Fellow freshman, catcher Adam Proctor was 1-for-3, as the Spartan bats were stymied by Penn State starter Justin Hagenman.
The Nittany Lions plated a run in both the first and second innings, before scoring four in the third and then erupting for seven runs in the fourth. The Spartans got on the board with a run in the ninth.
MSU threatened in the third inning, with Proctor leading off with a single to right, followed by King with a bunt single, but the rally fizzled.
The rest of the weekend series schedule has been altered, as the teams will now play a doubleheader on Saturday starting at 2 p.m.
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