Record Dog Crowd on Hand as Spikes Fall to Muckdogs, 5-3
STATE COLLEGE, PA - The State College Spikes welcomed a record 507 dogs and the second-largest human walk-up crowd in ballpark history to Medlar Field at Lubrano Park for Bark in the Park Night on Monday as the Spikes dropped a 5-3 decision to the Batavia Muckdogs.
The walk-up crowd was second only to the Spikes' home finale of 2010 for the biggest in the seven-year history of Medlar Field at Lubrano Park, while the dog crowd sold out the Outfield Bleacher section where fans' furry friends were allowed to sit and watch the action.
On the field, State College (8-7) battled back from an early 4-0 deficit to draw within striking distance of Batavia (7-8) with a three-run fifth inning. The Spikes' offensive assault started with back-to-back singles by Samuel Gonzalez and Ryan Hornback. After Jacob Stallings grounded into a fielder's choice, an errant throw allowed him to get to second and Gonzalez to score the first State College run.
Follwing a walk to Yhonathan Barrios and a single by Walker Gourley, Rodarrick Jones delivered a bases-loaded, two-run single to draw the Spikes within 4-3. However, despite chasing Muckdogs starter Joe Cuda from the mound and re-loading the bases, the Spikes could not produce any more runs.
State College's early deficit came as starter Clay Holmes (2-1) faced his first adversity as a professional, giving up four runs over 3 2/3 innings and taking the loss. Holmes allowed the first two earned runs of his pro career in the second inning when Batavia catcher Jesus Montero doubled in two runners to give the Muckdogs a 2-0 lead. The right-hander then yielded an RBI triple to Patrick Wisdom in the third innings and saw an unearned run score in the fourth.
Holmes allowed a total of three earned runs on five hits and two walks while hitting one batter and striking out four. The Pirates' 2011 ninth-round draft choice has now earned a decision in each of his first three career starts.
Batavia would add another run in the seventh inning when David Washington doubled and Montero singled him in to produced the game's final result.
Lance Breedlove pitched 2 1/3 innings of two-hit, shutout ball after taking over for Holmes. The Purdue product also struck out a pair of batters.
Muckdogs reliever Lee Stoppelman (2-0) got credit for the win with 2 1/3 scoreless innings following Cuda. Stoppelman allowed one baserunner on an error and struck out four in the effort.
The loss snapped the Spikes' six-game unbeaten streak at home to start the season.
Tuesday, the Spikes and Muckdogs complete their three-game series at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park with a 7:05 p.m. matchup. State College will have right-hander Jason Creasy (0-1) starting on the mound, while Batavia goes with left-hander Ben O'Shea (0-0).
Fans can also get a jumpstart on Fourth of July festivities with an EXTENDED Patriotic Post-Game FIREWORKS display, presented by the PA Lottery. The first 500 fans through the gates when they open at 5:45 p.m. for season ticket holders and 6 p.m. to the general public will also get a free T-shirt, presented by Penn State Federal Credit Union, on T-Shirt Tuesday.
Plus, the Spikes will hold the Salute to SPAM, celebrating the 75th anniversary of the canned meat product. The array of SPAM-related activities will include a SPAM toss, SPAM food items for sale, SPAM-inspired on-field contests, and various video tributes to SPAM.
Tickets for Tuesday's game, as well as every Spikes regular season home game in 2012, are currently on sale through the Spikes Box Office by calling (814) 272-1711 or by visiting in person. Fans can also buy and print single-game tickets by visiting StateCollegeSpikes.com.
Catch all of the action on Tuesday via the Spikes Radio Network, presented by Penn State Sports Medicine, at 6:35 p.m. with the Spikes GameDay Show live from the concourse behind home plate at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park. The Spikes' radio broadcast can also be heard worldwide through the "Listen Live" link on StateCollegeSpikes.com, provided by 95.3 FM 3WZ.
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New York-Penn League Stories from July 2, 2012
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