Vero Beach, Fla. - With an outstanding effort from senior right-handed pitcher Eddie Emes (New Brighton, Pa./New Brighton), the Penn State Greater Allegheny baseball team shut-out long-time United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA) adversary, Briarcliffe College (N.Y.), 5-0, in the first game of the 2014-15 season.
The first inning went one-two-three, as Emes sat down the first three batters with a pair of fly-outs and a strike-out swinging. Junior third-baseman Clay Groff (Pittsburgh, Pa./Taylor Allderdice) as both senior short-stop Aaron McGee (Harrison City, Pa./Penn-Trafford) and senior outfielder Gianmarco Concepcion (Bayamon, Puerto Rico/Mercyhurst North East) walked. With the bases loaded, sophomore designated hitter Francisco Del Rio (Vega Baja, Puerto Rico/Carlos Beltran Baseball Academy) walked to first, pushing Groff to note the first run of the game.
The second and third innings went fast as each side of the ball sat down their next three batters in the hitting order. In the bottom of the fourth, senior outfielder Matt Klena (Allison Park, Pa./Shaler Area) singled as sophomore first baseman Joshua Arroyo (Toa Alta, Puerto Rico/Levittown Baptist Academy) doubled, advancing Klena to third. Groff singled to bat Klena in, moving the GA lead to 2-0.
In the bottom of the 6th inning, Del Rio singled and advanced to second on an error by the right-fielder. Arroyo doubled to bat in Del Rio, 3-0. Junior second baseman John Nusser (Pittsburgh, Pa./Brashear) walked but got out pitcher to short-stop as Groff reached on fielder's choice before advancing to second on an error, Arroyo noting a run, GA leading Briarcliffe, 4-0.
Emes capped off his one-hitter with two strike-outs and a walk before the Greater Allegheny capped off the night. Senior catcher Troy Ambros (Pembroke Pines, Fla./West Broward) doubled as Concepcion and Klena hit sacrifices to push Ambros over home plate, finishing the scoring drive at a 5-0 Greater Allegheny triumph.
Emes threw a complete game in his first win on the mound, allowing just one hit and one walk with seven total strike-outs. Arroyo finished the night going 2-of-3 while batting one in and crossing home once. Both Groff and Ambros went 2-of-4, both adding a run each and Groff noting an RBI. Greater Allegheny managed eight hits off 25 at bats, swinging out just six times.
The Vero Beach trip continues Monday, as Greater Allegheny is set to square up with Penn State University Atheltic Conference (PSUAC) rival Penn State Beaver at 1 p.m. with McGee on the mound. The men take a break before they meet Parkland College at 7 p.m. for another game under the lights.