Spikes fall to Black Bears in road matchup

GRANVILLE, W.V. – Pedro Pages drove in a run with his first professional triple in the opening inning, but the State College Spikes were held in check by the West Virginia Black Bears in the late innings in a 4-1 defeat on Wednesday night at Monongalia County Ballpark.

Pages, the Cardinals’ 2019 sixth-round draft choice out of Florida Atlantic, launched a pitch into the right-center field gap that rolled all the way along the artificial turf to the wall for a three-bagger that scored Moises Castillo. Pages has now recorded six of his 17 pro hits at West Virginia.

Despite collecting eight hits over the first five innings, State College (16-16) was then limited by West Virginia (16-15) pitching, with the Black Bears retiring the last 14 Spikes batters in order.

State College starter Adrian Mardueno (1-1) made his longest outing as a professional but took the loss. Mardueno, the Cardinals’ 2019 20th-round draft choice out of San Diego State, was charged with two runs on four hits and two walks while striking out three batters over 4 1/3 innings.

West Virginia took the lead in the fifth when Cory Wood singled in one run and a balk called on Spikes reliever Jack Ralston plated another. Matt Fraizer then brought in a run in the seventh with a single. Matt Gorski produced the last Black Bears run in the ninth when he singled, stole second, and advanced home on a throwing error by catcher Carlos Soto.

Black Bears reliever Cameron Junker (3-0) picked up the victory with 2 1/3 innings of scoreless ball. Junker allowed one hit and two walks while striking out six batters, including the last five in a row.

Garrett Leonard (4) earned the three-inning save after retiring all nine batters he faced, including four via strikeout.

The game was delayed by rain twice for a total of 20 minutes.