Spikes drop 2nd game on road trip

NORWICH, Conn. — Michael Baird held the Connecticut Tigers hitless for five innings, and the State College Spikes combined for 6 2/3 innings of no-hit ball as a staff, but the Tigers surged late to top the Spikes, 3-0, Wednesday afternoon at Dodd Stadium.

Baird, the St. Louis Cardinals’ 23rd-round draft choice out of Southern Illinois, allowed just a walk to Clark Brinkman in the third. The right-hander bounced back from yielding the free pass to pick Brinkman off first and faced the minimum 15 batters over his five innings. Baird also recorded six strikeouts.

Hector Villalobos (1-1) kept the no-hitter going for State College (14-23) in the sixth, but yielded Connecticut’s (19-17) first run. After a dropped foul popup error extended his time at bat, Dayton Dugas walked, stole second base, moved to thiVillalobos took the loss despite the run he was charged with being unearned.

Edgar Gonzalez then retired the first two batters of the Tigers seventh before Jordan Verdon broke up the no-hitter with a broken bat liner to center field.

Garcia then drove in two more runs with an eighth-inning double for Connecticut to finalize the scoring.

State College’s offense was held to a Delvin Perez infield single and a bunt single from Edwin Figuera, both in the first inning, as well as two walks in the game.

Tigers starter Chance Kirby (2-1) earned the win with six scoreless innings, giving up both Spikes hits and a walk while striking out six.

Ethan DeCaster (1) then retired the last six State College batters of the game in order for the save.

The Spikes are now 0-3 in day games this season.

The Spikes finish the first half of their six-game road trip through New England Thursday with the finale of a three-game set against the Tigers at Dodd Stadium. Left-hander Jacob Schlesener (0-3) is set to start the 7:05 p.m. game for State College, while Connecticut is slated to send right-hander Carlos Guzman (1-1) to the mound.

Following the series in Connecticut, the Spikes will meet the Lowell Spinners (Boston Red Sox) for three games.