ABINGTON, Pa. — Down early to nationally ranked Rowan University, the Penn State Abington baseball team battled to a 9-8 upset of the No. 11 Profs on Tuesday, March 23. The Nittany Lions improved to 4-1 on the season before they break into conference play.
The Abington home field, Alverthorpe Park, has been an Achilles' heel for the Profs who lost to the Nittany Lions 10-7 in 2018 while ranked No. 6 in the country, and losing in 2014 by a score of 4-3 when they were No. 10 in the country.
Jaden Himmelreich picked up the win, but it was a team effort with four pitchers going to the mound.
Stevie Stevenson led Abington at the plate, going 4-of-5 with a run and an RBI, and he picked up the game tying single to second base. In his two at bats, Justin Fogel came through in the clutch. The freshman knocked in a critical home run in the eighth inning.
Abington came out slow, letting the Profs score on errors and giving the visitors a 3-0 lead after the first inning. In the fourth inning, Rowan's Ryan Murphy took a solo shot over the left field wall to add on another run.
Abington woke up in the fifth. With the bases loaded, Zach Morales sliced his pitch through the infield to drive in two runs. After a pitching change, Rowan hit Paul Woodley to walk in a run and then walked Darrien Mogel to tie the game at 4-4. Fogel stepped in with the bases loaded and two outs and hit his pitch out to center to give the Nittany Lions a 6-4 lead after five innings.
Rowan rallied in the sixth inning and tied the game back up with two runs after a double. With a man on second and two outs, Rowan's batter drove a deep ball to left field and looked like they would take the lead, but a rocket from Brendon Reese found the catcher and got the out at home.
Still tied 6-6 in the eighth inning, Fogel broke the deadlock with his solo shot that just made it past the centerfielders glove for his first career home run.
The Profs responded in the top of the ninth and built momentum scoring two runs off back-to-back singles to take the 8-7 lead.
In the bottom of the ninth with two outs the Nittany Lions had bases loaded for Stevenson. He hit an awkward ball for the second baseman, and Fogel slid into second base safe, tying the game at 8-8. Sean Doherty fell behind the count early but ended up being hit by a pitch for the game winning run to score for the Nittany Lions.
The box score is available here.
About Penn State Abington
Penn State Abington provides an affordable, accessible and high-impact education resulting in the success of a diverse student body. It is committed to student success through innovative approaches to 21st-century public higher education within a world-class research university. With nearly 3,500 students, Penn State Abington is a residential campus that offers baccalaureate degrees in 22 majors, undergraduate research, the Schreyer Honors College, NCAA Division III athletics and more.