#6 Point Park gets another DH split on Day 3 of RussMatt Central FL Invitational
March 5, 2013 at 9:15 p.m. ET
Senior Ryan Loutsenhizer delivers a pitch on Tuesday versus Evangel (Mo.). Photo by Lauren Jones.
WINTER HAVEN, Fla. -- No. 6 Point Park University baseball went deeper into its starting rotation of pitchers for the first time this year and came away with a doubleheader split with Evangel (Mo.) on Day 3 of its stay at the RussMatt Central Florida Invitational on Tuesday.
The Pioneers (5-5) beat Evangel (13-7), 9-5, in the first game, but lost game two, 2-1, in eight innings. It was the third doubleheader split of the trip for the Pioneers, who are 3-3 on the trip so far.
Tuesday was the first time this season that Point Park went outside of the four-pitcher rotation that each got two starts through the first eight games. The Pioneers got two good starts out of Ryan Loutsenhizer and Josh Brooks, and they would have come away with two wins if it got more than four hits in the second game.
Loutsenhizer, a senior right-hander from North Huntingdon, Pa., pitched six strong innings in the opener and gave up only one run. He held Evangel in check on five hits and also added three strikeouts and one walk.
The game was tied, 1-1, before the Pioneers broke open for eight runs in the fifth inning. The eight runs came on four hits, three walks and an error. Big hits in the uprising included an RBI double from catcher Ossie Alfonzo, an RBI single by second baseman Tom Birko and a two-run single from first baseman Marlon Leyva.
Evangel did get four runs off the Point Park bullpen in the seventh, but the 9-1 lead was too far out of reach. Birko and Leyva were both 2 for 3 with two RBIs to lead the Pioneers' offense. Center fielder Tom Pasinski was 1 for 2 with a double, a walk and two runs.
Evangel pitcher Blake McKnight went all eight innings in Game 2, and he shut down the Point Park bats to the tune of four hits allowed, seven strikeouts and one walk. He did not allow more than one hit in any inning as the Pioneers could not get anything going.
Josh Brooks was up to the task with McKnight in the pitcher's duel, and he gave up six hits over his five innings, and the only run he gave up came when Evangel put three singles together to start the fifth. Brooks, a senior from Pheonix, Ariz., in his second year on the team, finished with one strikeout and no walks.
Reliever Toby Eigner, from Marathon, Fla., faced the minimum six batters through his first two innings -- the sixth and the seventh. But Evangel loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the eighth, and Michael Headlee produced the walk-off hit, an RBI single. Two singles and a fielder's choice put runners at the corners, and a hit batter loaded the bases to set the stage.
Point Park has an off day Wedneday before its final day at the RussMatt Central FL Invitational on Thursday. The Pioneers play Cornerstone (Mich.) and 12:30 p.m. and Clarke (Iowa) at 3:30 p.m. that day.