Baseball Remains Alive for Postseason Bid with Wednesday Split
PAINESVILLE, Ohio – Sophomore Anthony Raschilla (Girard, Ohio) had four hits, including a home run, and freshman Kenny Dixon (Springfield, Ohio) also had four hits as Ohio Dominican's baseball team stayed in contention for a GLIAC Tournament bid with a doubleheader split at Lake Erie on Wednesday.
After falling 4-2 in the opener, ODU bounced back with a 6-5 victory in game two. The Panthers moved to 23-21 (15-15 GLIAC), while Lake Erie clinched a tournament bid as the Storm are 25-21 (21-11 GLIAC).
The Panthers remained in seventh place in the GLIAC standings, one game behind Tiffin for the sixth and final spot in the tournament.
After sophomore Bryan Rudolph (Pickerington, Ohio) staked the Panthers to a 2-0 lead in game two with his two-run double in the first inning, Raschilla launched a three-run blast to right field in the third to give ODU a 5-0 lead. Dixon and classmate Kyle Tisdale (Uniontown, Ohio) both singled in front of Raschilla, who hit his second homer of the season against the Storm.
Freshman Alberto Canales (West Park, Fla.) worked out of trouble in both the third and fourth innings, allowing a pair of hits but no damage in either frame before settling down for a perfect fifth inning.
The Panthers tacked on another run in the sixth, as senior Evan Shaw (Delaware, Ohio) reached on a fielder's choice grounder, scoring redshirt junior Zack Dascenzo (Uniontown, Pa.) to give ODU a 6-0 lead.
Canales exited after yielding a two-run homer in the bottom of the sixth, but senior Erik Lamka (Troy, Ohio) kept the Storm in check until the seventh. Lake Erie pushed across two runs in its final at bat, and freshman Kevin Clark (Columbus, Ohio) entered. After allowing an RBI single, the lefty picked up his first save by retiring the final batter on a fly out to left.
Dixon had his first collegiate three-hit game, going 3-for-4 with two runs scored, and has now hit in each of the last four games. Raschilla went 2-for-4 with a pair of runs and the three RBI, and Rudolph also collected a pair of hits and RBI.
Canales improved to 5-1 on the campaign, picking up the win after working five-plus innings, allowing five hits and two runs. He struck out one and did not walk a batter, and has now allowed just the two earned runs in his past 18 innings pitched. Overall, Canales has an 0.64 ERA in conference games.
In the opener, ODU had its chances to score, but hit into three double plays while stranding six runners.
The Panthers hit into double plays in each of the first two innings as Lake Erie went in front 1-0, and the Storm extended the lead to 3-0 on a two-run homer in the third.
ODU finally got its offense going in the sixth, as three straight singles by Dixon, Tisdale and Raschilla loaded the bases with nobody out. A double play groundout scored a run, and senior John Bowron (Dayton, Ohio) doubled down the left field line to plate another and make it 3-2.
Bowron, though, was stranded at second, and after Lake Erie put up an insurance run in the sixth, ODU managed just one hit in the seventh to suffer the setback.
Junior Nick Venditti (Brecksville, Ohio) worked five innings and allowed four runs on eight hits. He struck out five and walked three in falling to 5-4 on the year.
Tisdale, Raschilla and senior Tyler Zaidel (Cincinnati, Ohio) each had two hits for the Panthers, who finished with 10 hits in the game.
Ohio Dominican closes the regular season with a four-game home series with Grand Valley State, starting at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Contact: Scott Miles