Spikes' late drive falls short against Scrappers

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – One night before they will welcome fans to watch games on the diamond and the gridiron at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park, the State College Spikes used a late surge to get close to the Mahoning Valley Scrappers before the clock ran out on a 10-6 loss to the Scrappers on Wednesday night.

The Spikes will be home at 6:35 p.m. on Thursday, and fans looking to enjoy Penn State football’s season opener at Purdue on the same night can have the best of both worlds at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park.

Fans will be able to enjoy live look-ins at the Penn State/Purdue game, which is slated to kick off at 8 p.m., during each and every inning break once it starts, with the FOX broadcast set to play in full on the Medlar Field at Lubrano Park videoboard at the conclusion of the Spikes game, along with Gus Johnson and Joel Klatt’s call on the ballpark sound system.

Ballpark concessions will be available throughout both games, and admission will be free for all fans wishing to watch the football game once the Spikes game has concluded.

Trailing 10-4 going into the ninth on Wednesday, the Spikes (20-16 2nd half) broke through against Scrappers (14-22 2nd half) ace reliever Alan Carter, with Trent Taylor and Brock Reller drawing four-pitch walks two batters apart and DeAndre Shelton singling to left in between.

After Nick Gile drew a walk to bring in Taylor, Shelton dashed home on an errant throw back to the pitcher to put the tying run on deck. However, Carter forced John Mead to ground out to end the game.

With the loss, the Spikes are now trailing the Williamsport Crosscutters by 2 ½ games in the race for the MLB Draft League’s second-half Championship Game berth with four games remaining in the regular season.

The Spikes and Scrappers engaged in a slugfest early, with Oscar Ponce’s solo homer to left, his second of the season, building Mahoning Valley’s lead to 4-1 in the third. However, State College responded with Gile’s two-run single and Devin Buckner’s RBI to tie the game.

Mahoning Valley took the lead for good in the fourth, though. Dom Bucko’s two-run homer to right-center field, his second of the season, put the Scrappers out in front before Jeffrey Wehler added an RBI double. Mahoning Valley added three more runs without a hit in the seventh to build their lead before the Spikes’ two-minute offense got them close late.

The Spikes will now send right-hander J.D. Daniels (3-2) to the hill for a crucial game on Thursday night, with the Scrappers set to start right-hander Jan Figueroa (0-2).

Gates will open for the Spikes game at 5:30 p.m., and fans can also enjoy the last Thirsty Thursday of the season, with $2 select drafts and $4 craft drafts available from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Following the watch party, the Spikes will host the Trenton Thunder for the last series of the 2022 season at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. All three games will start at 6:35 p.m., and the slate includes another bobblehead giveaway/special appearance combo as Michael Mauti, the heart and soul of the 2012 “Iron Lions,” will be on hand as part of the night’s activities on Saturday, September 3. Mauti’s bobblehead also going to the first 1,000 fans of all ages, presented by Penn State Health.

In addition, fans will be thrilled by the chance to see another spectacular display light up the Happy Valley skies from the ballpark infield as part of FIREWORKS from the Field, with Starfire Corporation *presenting the show on Sunday, September 4 at the *Fan Appreciation Night *regular season finale presented by *Lion Country Kia, featuring one LuCKy fan driving home a winner with LuCKy’s Kia Giveaway.

Plus, fans will enjoy the last Bark in the Park *of the season, presented by the *Centre Daily Times, on Friday, September 2, as well as Dogs and Kids Run the Bases Home Run Edition after the game thanks to Mount Nittany Health.

Tickets for each of the four games remaining on the Spikes’ biggest regular season home schedule in franchise history are available now. Tickets can be purchased by calling (814) 272-1711 or by visiting the Spikes Ticket Office in person from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Fans can also buy and download single-game tickets, and view the full 2022 promotional schedule, at the only source for authentic Spikes tickets online by visiting StateCollegeSpikes.com.

More ticket packages, including an array of group and hospitality options for the 2022 season and for football Saturdays in the fall, are currently on sale by calling the Spikes at (814) 272-1711. Additional information on all club ticketing options, as well as team news and schedule info, can be viewed at StateCollegeSpikes.com.

Catch all the action of the Spikes’ game on Thursday via the Spikes Radio Network presented by Penn State Sports Medicine, Official Healthcare Provider of Penn State Athletics with Joe Putnam on the call. The broadcast starts with Spikes Live! presented by Mount Nittany Health on the air from Medlar Field at Lubrano Park starting at approximately 6:10 p.m.

The game can be viewed worldwide on the *MLB Draft League *streaming platform at MLBDraftLeague.com/streaming, along with the “Listen Live” link on StateCollegeSpikes.com and the *TuneIn Radio *app.