STATE COLLEGE - Zack Von Rosenberg was dominant in six shutout innings on the mound for the State College Spikes, but it came down to an error in the bottom of the ninth inning on Gerlis Rodriguez's sacrifice bunt to provide the winning run as the Spikes defeated the Staten Island Yankees for the first time in over three years, 3-2, at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park on Thursday.
Von Rosenberg allowed just two runs and two walks while striking out three. However, the State College (23-24) right-hander did not factor in the decision, as Staten Island (21-22) tied the game, 2-2, with a pair of runs in the seventh.
After firing zeroes at each other for the next two innings, the Spikes started their final offensive push in the ninth with Pat Irvine's leadoff single. Walker Gourley then placed a perfect bunt down the first-base line for a base hit. Yankees catcher Nick McCoy then threw Rodriguez's sacrifice bunt attempt away to allow Irvine to score the final run of the game.
State College had taken the lead in the first innings when Mel Rojas, Jr. doubled and then scored on Adalberto Santos's RBI groundout. The Spikes added another run in the fifth when Rojas knocked in Kelson Brown after the Spikes third baseman's leadoff double. Rojas, Irvine and Brown each produced multi-hit performances in the game.
It was the first State College win over Staten Island since July 21, 2007, when the Spikes took a 7-1 win at Richmond County Bank Ballpark. Before Thursday, the Spikes had last defeate the Yankees at home on July 16, 2006.
Von Rosenberg stretched his streak of innings without allowing an earned run to 16 in his scoreless start. Jhonathan Ramos (3-1) earned the win for the Spikes with a scoreless ninth inning, allowing one hit and striking out one.
Staten Island reliever Preston Claiborne (1-2) took the loss after allowing the unearned run in the bottom of the ninth. Over an inning-plus, Claiborne yielded two hits and struck out two.
Friday, the Spikes and Yankees meet in the rubber match of their three-game set at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park, with game time scheduled for 7:05 p.m. State College will send left-hander Zack Dodson (1-2) to the mound to meet Staten Island right-hander Shane Greene (2-4).