GRANVILLE, W.VA (WDTV) - (Black Bears game release):
Granville, W. Va. – Returning home for a three-game series at Monongalia County Ballpark, the West Virginia Moonshiners fell to the State College Spikes 4-3.
West Virginia debuted its alternate team name in tonight’s matchup, paying homage to the history and culture of moonshining in the state. The team will maintain the Moonshiners moniker for the rest of this home series.
State College had West Virginia’s number in the early going. The Spikes put up four runs through the first three innings, getting out to an early 4-0 lead.
P Francis Del Orbe came in for the Moonshiners and provided much needed relief. Through three and two-thirds innings, the righty didn’t allow a run on two hits, striking out three batters with only one walk.
Then in the bottom of the fifth, West Virginia got on the board. 1B Nick Valaika crushed a solo home run to left field, followed by a sac-fly from 2B Raul Siri to put the score at 4-2.
The Moonshiners cut the lead down to one in the bottom of the seventh. With the bases loaded, C Grant Koch drew a walk to bring around another run for the home team.
West Virginia got another nice bullpen outing from P Ryan Valdes. The reliever threw two innings of scoreless baseball, striking out four batters without surrendering a hit or a walk.
After P Cam Alldred came in the top of the ninth to throw another hitless frame, the Moonshiners made things interesting in the bottom of the inning. A pair of walks put runners on first and second with two outs, but West Virginia couldn’t complete the comeback.
Both teams are back in action for game two of the home series, with first pitch scheduled for 7:05 p.m.