Spikes down VT

BURLINGTON, VT – The State College Spikes held the Vermont Lake Monsters without a hit for 7 1/3 combined innings, and Rowan Wick smashed his New York-Penn League-leading 13th home run of the year to jumpstart the Spikes’ offense in a 7-0 victory on Wednesday night at Centennial Field.

The win was the sixth in a row for the Spikes (24-8), who have won 13 of their last 14 games. State College also holds a five-game winning streak on the road, and the Spikes’ record is the best overall mark in the NYPL.

Vermont (11-21) did not get a hit until John Nogowski’s one-out single off Tyler Bray in the eighth inning, and did not produce another hit in the game. Spikes starter Trey Nielsen and reliever Anderson Gerdel (1-0) had each allowed a walk, but no hits, through the first seven innings. Nielsen struck out three batters over four innings of work while Gerdel recorded five strikeouts over his three frames in earning the win.

Bray rebounded from allowing the hit to notch two strikeouts of his own, and Nick Lomascolo gave up one walk and struck out two batters in the ninth inning to close out the win.

Wick added to his already impressive totals with a huge three-run home run to right-center field in the first inning to give State College the lead. The North Vancouver, BC native also bumped his league-leading RBI total to 35 while increasing his batting average to .380, also the top mark in the NYPL.

The Spikes added four runs in the fourth inning to increase their lead even more and leave center stage to the pitching staff. Jhohan Acevedo, Darren Seferina and Danny Diekroeger all knocked in runs during the frame.

Seferina was the lone Spike with multiple hits in the contest. Jake Stone stretched his hitting streak to 11 games with a single in the fourth.

Lake Monsters starter Corey Miller (0-1) took the loss after being tagged for six runs on three hits and three walks over three-plus innings of work. Miller also struck out one in the effort.

The no-hit bid was the Spikes’ closest to completion since August 14, 2010, when Tyler Waldron, Ryan Beckman and Brooks Pounders combined to hold the Aberdeen IronBirds without a hit until David Anderson’s double with two outs in the ninth inning. State College would still beat Aberdeen at Ripken Stadium that night by a 1-0 score.

Thursday, the Spikes and Lake Monsters meet for the second game of their three-game series at Centennial Field. The 7:05 p.m. matchup will feature right-hander Cody Schumacher (1-0) on the mound for State College. Schumacher gave up only one hit and two walks over 5 2/3 innings for his first professional win last time out against Brooklyn. Vermont will send right-hander A.J. Burke (2-1) to the mound.