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Piper gets rowdy on Scrappers in 14-8 win

Spikes' catcher puts sleeper on hurlers with six RBI
Kenny Piper smashed another homer and knocked in six runs on Tuesday night at Mahoning Valley. (Steve Manuel)
June 15, 2021

BOX SCORE/PLAY-BY-PLAY (via PitchAware) NILES, Ohio – Kenny Piper came to do one thing Tuesday night at Eastwood Field, and it wasn't to chew bubblegum. The State College Spikes catcher went 4-for-5 with two doubles and his second homer of the season, scored four runs and drove in six in

BOX SCORE/PLAY-BY-PLAY (via PitchAware)

NILES, OhioKenny Piper came to do one thing Tuesday night at Eastwood Field, and it wasn't to chew bubblegum.

The State College Spikes catcher went 4-for-5 with two doubles and his second homer of the season, scored four runs and drove in six in a nearly record-setting performance as the Spikes took a 14-8 slugfest from the Mahoning Valley Scrappers.

In a game where the Spikes (8-10) produced 14 hits as a team, Piper delivered at the biggest moments, starting with a bases-loaded, bases-clearing double to key a four-run third inning. The Columbia (Mo.) College product then stepped up in the sixth and clubbed a three-run homer to left field off Mahoning Valley (11-7) reliever Garrett Schoenle to up the State College lead to 13-5.

Piper’s single-game RBI total was just one shy of the team record of seven, set by Lars Nootbaar on August 24, 2018 against the Auburn Doubledays. The catcher’s hit total was also just one shy of the team record of five, set by Ciro Rosero in 2008 and matched by David Vinsky in 2019.

After yielding three runs in the first, the Spikes surged with three straight crooked numbers from the second through fourth frames. Mark Vierling began the State College onslaught with a two-run line-drive homer off Scrappers starter Nathan Lavender, his first as a Spike, to the left field bullpen in the second.

Newcomer Nathan Church contributed an RBI single in the fifth and became one of four Spikes to notch multi-hit games. Fellow Spikes newbie Damiano Palmegiani went 1-for-3 and scored three runs while driving in one.

Austin Cheeley (1-0) tossed 1 2/3 scoreless innings of relief, allowing one hit and one walk while striking out three batters, to pick up the win.

Lavender took the loss for Mahoning Valley after giving up six runs, five of them earned, on four hits and three walks over 2 2/3 innings. The right-hander struck out five batters in the effort.

The Spikes have now dealt the Scrappers both of their defeats at Eastwood Field this season, as Mahoning Valley dropped to 5-2 at home.

Wednesday night, State College and Mahoning Valley meet in the middle game of their three-game set, with a 7:05 p.m. start time at Eastwood Field. Right-hander Griffin Miller (0-2) is scheduled to go on the mound for the Spikes against an as yet undetermined Scrappers starter.

Following the conclusion of the current series, State College will take on the Williamsport Crosscutters at Muncy Bank Ballpark at Historic Bowman Field on Friday and Saturday before returning home on Father’s Day for a matchup against the Crosscutters.

The Father’s Day at the Ballpark matchup will start at 4:05 p.m., with gates open to the public at 3 p.m. Fans can bring Dad out for a great time and enjoy the fun themselves with the Spikes Father’s Day Gift Pack. The Gift Pack includes 4 Diamond Club or Field Box seats, 4 hot dogs, 4 regular sodas, a Spikes Pint Glass, and a $10 Spikes Gift Card, all for just $85. Plus, fans can enjoy a Post-Game Kids and Dads Run the Bases Home Run Edition.

For more information, and to purchase the Father’s Day Gift Pack, call the Spikes Ticket Office at 814-272-1711, or buy online at StateCollegeSpikes.com.

It’s also another Sunday Funday at the ballpark, presented by Bigfoot Country Legends, with $3 ice cream sundaes all game long and $3 16 oz. hard seltzers from 3-5 p.m.

Tickets for Sunday’s game, as well as every game remaining on the 2021 home schedule, are currently on sale through the Spikes Ticket Office. Tickets can be purchased by calling (814) 272-1711 or by visiting the Ticket Office in person from 9 a.m. to the end of the game on gamedays Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to the end of the game on gamedays Saturday and Sunday, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on non-gamedays Monday through Friday.

Fans can also buy and download single-game tickets by visiting StateCollegeSpikes.com.

Catch all of the action Sunday via the Spikes Radio Network, presented by Penn State Sports Medicine, Official Healthcare Provider of Penn State Athletics, starting with Spikes Live, presented by Mount Nittany Health, on the air from Medlar Field at Lubrano Park. 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.