BATAVIA, N.Y. - Walker Gourley drove in three runs to help key a pair of scoring bursts, including a four-run eighth inning that broke open a tie game, to help the State College Spikes take their fifth victory in a row by downing the Batavia Muckdogs, 7-4, on Monday night at Dwyer Stadium.
Gourley, who drove in three runs on Saturday without the benefit of a hit, produced a pair of run-scoring singles for State College (6-2) on Monday, starting with an RBI base knock in the second inning. That hit completed a three-run frame for the Spikes, after a attempted sacrifice bunt by Yhonathan Barrios was erred upon by Batavia (3-5) third baseman Garrett Wittels to allow the first two runs to score.
The Muckdogs broke back in the third inning with their own trio of runs to tie the game.
After Breyvic Valera doubled with one out, Wittels singled to left, and an error by Gourley allowed Valera to come home. Roberto Reyes then drove in Wittels with a groundout, and three wild pitches by Spikes starter Jake Burnette gave Batavia another run to knot the contest at 3-3.
The score remained the same until the eighth inning, when State College took advantage of its opportunites. D.J. Crumlich's leadoff single was followed by an error that let Samuel Gonzalez reach base. After a passed ball and a groundout, Chris Diaz was intentionally walked to load the bases.
Barrios then knocked in Crumlich with an infield single, and Gourley followed with a two-run single to right. An errant throw home by Reyes on the same play allowed another run to score to give State College a 7-3 lead.
The Muckdogs scratched out another run in the ninth inning, but could not muster any more offense, allowing the Spikes to earn their first win on the road in 2012.
Gourley, Diaz and Barrios all had multiple hits for State College, with Diaz adding a double.
Spikes reliever Tom Harlan (1-0) received his first win as a professional by holding the Muckdogs without a run over the seventh and eighth innings. Harlan yielded one hit and struck out a batter in the effort.
Burnette allowed three runs on four hits and three walks over four innings in his second start for State College, striking out one batter as well.
Corey Baker (0-2) took the loss in relief for Batavia, with two of the four runs he allowed in the eighth inning going unearned. Baker gave up three hits and a walk in his only inning on the mound, striking out one in the process.
Tuesday, top Pirates pitching prospect Luis Heredia makes his second start for the Spikes as they face the Muckdogs in the second game of a three-game series at Dwyer Stadium with a 7:05 p.m. start time. Heredia went four scoreless innings in his first start with the club, allowing just one hit and two walks while striking out four Williamsport Crosscutters on Thursday night at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park.
The Muckdogs will go with right-hander Joe Cuda (0-0), who also pitched four shutout innings in his last start against Auburn on Wednesday.
The Spikes will complete a road trip through Batavia and Mahoning Valley over the next five nights before coming back home.