March 27, 2007
ATHENS, Ohio - Freshman Marc Krauss became the first Bobcat to homer three times in a game since the 2003 season, but his five RBI were not enough in Ohio's 14-7 loss to Youngstown State Tuesday night in Bob Wren Stadium.
"I haven't hit many balls that well this year," Krauss (Deshler, Ohio) said. "The coaches have been on me, with my size and strength, to get some balls out of the ballpark. Something finally clicked today but it's no good if it's in a loss."
Krauss' three-home-run-game is the first by an Ohio player since Ben Crabtree hit three out of the park March 9, 2003 in a 16-7 Bobcat win. Crabtree's effort also came against Youngstown State. The five RBI by Krauss is the most by a Bobcat since Anthony Gressick drove in six runs in the 2006 season finale against Bowling Green.
The three homes runs by Krauss on the day were also the first home runs of his Bobcat career.
The Bobcats (9-11) finished with seven runs on 13 hits and three errors in the loss. Ohio left 11 men on base and issued six walks. Youngstown State (8-11) tallied 14 runs on 15 hits without an error and left eight men on base. The Penguins scored all 14 of their runs in the first five innings of play.
Sophomore Matt Schlarb (Lexington, Ohio) took the loss to fall to 3-2 on the season. He lasted 1.2 innings and allowed five hits and six runs, three of them earned. Junior Cody Neyman (Dravosburg, Pa.) pitched 2.2 scoreless innings in his season debut.
Krauss led the way for the Bobcats and finished 3-for-5 with three home runs, five RBI and three runs scored. The 6-3, 215-pound first baseman played the final two innings in centerfield and made a diving catch that turned into a double play in the ninth for good measure.
"I haven't played much center," Krauss said. "I usually played left or right (in high school) but we kind of ran out of guys today. Outfield is outfield, though."
Junior Bryant Witt (Powell, Ohio) went 3-for-4 with a run scored in the loss while sophomore Hayden Johnston (Strattanville, Pa.) was 2-for-4 with an RBI. Sophomore Kirk Payne (Hilliard, Ohio) went 1-for-3 with a run scored.
Eric Marzek earned the win for the Penguins to move to 1-1 on the year. He gave up nine hits and five earned runs in five innings but was on the mound for all 14 of Youngstown State's runs. Dustin Wachter was 2-for-4 with two home runs, three RBI and three runs scored while current Horizon League Player of the Week Erich Diedrich finished 2-for-5 with a three-run home run and two runs.
The Penguins wasted no time getting on the board as they scored five times in the top of the first. Sean Lucas reached on an error to open the inning and moved to second on a John Koehnlein single. After a strikeout, Diedrich hit a booming three-run home run to start the scoring. Youngstown State was not done in the inning, however, as Thomas Clayton walked with two away and trotted home on a two-run homer by Wachter that gave the Penguins and early 5-0 lead.
The Bobcats fell into a six-run hole in the top of the second when Lou Gatozzi tallied a sacrifice fly to score Anthony Munoz. After issuing a two-out walk later in the inning, Schlarb's day was over after just 1.2 innings. Junior John Angelicchi (Woodmere, Ohio) entered for the Bobcats and escaped a bases loaded jam in his first appearance of the season.
Ohio answered right back in the bottom of the second when Krauss led off the frame with a deep blast to center field for his first career home run. Junior Jason Selhorst (Ottawa, Ohio) followed the deep fly with a walk and a single by Witt put runners on first and second with nobody away. The next three Bobcats went down in order, however, and both runners were left stranded.
The Penguins matched Ohio's run in the top of the third inning to take a 7-1 lead. Wachter lined an Angelicchi offering down the left field line and just cleared the outfield wall for a solo home run, his second blast of the game.
The Bobcats stormed back into the game in the bottom of the third, with Krauss again playing the run producer. Payne reached on a bunt single to start the inning and junior Matt Stiffler (Bellbrook, Ohio) followed with his second walk of the day to put two runners on. Two batters later, Krauss came through with another long blast that cleared the center field wall to cut Ohio's deficit to 7-4.
Youngstown State fired right back in the fourth with four more runs as Ohio was forced to use three different pitchers in the inning. A walk started the frame but Angelicchi retired the next two hitters in order. The Bobcat right-hander then allowed an RBI single to Josh Page before giving way to southpaw junior Matt Smith (Centre Hall, Pa.). Smith issued three consecutive walks in front of a two-run single by Munoz before senior Zeke Isaacs (West Carrollton, Ohio) came on and recorded the final out. The end result of the inning was four Penguin runs on just two hits and an 11-4 Youngstown State advantage.
The Bobcats threatened to tighten the game in the bottom of the fourth as they loaded the bases with two away. Senior Willie Walker (Marysville, Ohio) and freshman Jeremie Rehak (Pittsburgh, Pa.) singled and Stiffler drew his third walk of the game but all three men were left stranded.
The Penguins earned a 10-run lead in the fifth with three more runs. Isaacs struck out the side but Youngstown State singled five times between the punch-outs for a 14-4 lead.
In the bottom of the fifth inning, Krauss launched a monster home run over the right field fence for his third home run of the game. He nearly lifted his fourth deep fly of the game in the sixth inning, sending a long fly ball to the warning track at the 405-foot marker in center field, but the Penguin outfielder made the play up against the wall.
Isaacs retired the side in order in the sixth and Neyman did the same in the seventh before Ohio tallied two runs to pull within 14-7. Johnston slugged an RBI double and senior Dusty Hammond (Bellefontaine, Ohio) recorded an RBI groundout in the frame, but the runs would be the final of the game for either team in a 14-7 Bobcat loss to the Penguins.
Ohio will look to end its five-game losing streak Wednesday when the Bobcats travel to Huntington, W.Va. for a 3 p.m. match up at Marshall.
"We've got a lot of work to do but I think we can turn this around," Krauss said.