BATAVIA, N.Y. - Jacob Schlesener broke his own State College Spikes single-game strikeout record with 12 whiffs, and the Spikes notched 18 strikeouts as a team to set a club record for a nine-inning game in a 6-4 victory over the Batavia Muckidogs on Wednesday night at Dwyer Stadium.
Schlesener (1-1), who set the Spikes (11-8) record with 11 in his last start at Dwyer Stadium on August 26, 2018, bettered his effort with an even dozen over six innings. The left-hander struck out the first three batters of the game and bookended the evening by forcing Jack Strunc to swing and miss for the record-setting 12th strikeout in the sixth inning.
Following Schlesener's record effort, Connor Lunn recorded one strikeout in the seventh and Eric Lex compiled two strikeouts in the eighth to allow State College to get within one of the franchise's previous nine-inning strikeout record of 16, set on July 31, 2015 against Lowell.
In the ninth, Fabian Blanco entered the game with a 6-2 lead and struck out Gerardo Nunez to tie the team record. However, Dustin Skelton walked and Milton Smith II doubled in two runs to halve the lead, forcing the Spikes to turn to Logan Gragg (2).
Gragg then struck out Nic Ready and Albert Guaimaro to set the club record and end the game.
Schlesener yielded two runs, one of them earned, on two hits, two walks and a hit batsman in the record effort. The Rogersville, Mo. native threw 94 pitches, 57 of them strikes, over the course of his six frames on the mound.
The Spikes' offense was led by David Vinsky , who went 3-for-5 with three runs batted in, including two on his first home run in a State College uniform, a shot to left field, in the ninth. Vinsky, the St. Louis Cardinals' 2019 15th-round draft choice out of Northwood University in Michigan, also doubled in a run in the fifth.
Jonatan Machado added two hits, including an RBI single in the seventh. Carlos Soto went 2-for-4 with a double to aid the State College cause as well.
Donivan Williams 's sacrifice fly in the sixth also brought in a Spikes run, while Dariel Gomez knocked in one run and scored two as part of a 1-for-3 performance.
Batavia (11-7) reliever Eli Villalobos (0-1) gave up four runs on five hits and two walks over four innings to take the loss. Villalobos struck out two batters in the effort.
The win stopped the Spikes' three-game losing streak, and drew them back within a half-game of the Muckdogs for the New York-Penn League Pinckney Division lead.
The Spikes will start the second half of their six-game road trip with a 7:05 p.m. Independence Day matchup against the Mahoning Valley Scrappers (Cleveland Indians) at Eastwood Field on Thursday. Right-hander Andre Pallante (1-0), the Cardinals 2019 fourth-round draft choice out of UC Irvine, gets the ball for State College, with left-hander Connor Thomas (1-0) scheduled to follow him on the mound.
The Scrappers are slated to send right-hander Jhonneyver Gutierrez (1-1) to the hill.
Following the road trip, the Spikes return home on Sunday, July 7 to begin a three-game series against the Muckdogs at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park. Sunday night will feature Bark in the Park II presented by NEWSRADIO 1390 WRSC and the Centre Daily Times, where fans can bring their dogs to the park for a night of canine-centric fun and the Spikes will wear special Bark in the Park Jerseys that feature dog photos submitted by fans.
The jerseys are also up for bids through the Spikes' partnership with LiveSource, with proceeds from the auction going to local animal rescues thanks to Metzger Animal Hospital. Fans can place their bids through the LiveSource app now, downloadable at LiveSourceApp.com.
In addition, fans can enjoy Sunday Kids Day presented by First National Bank. Followed Sunday's matchup, the Spikes are home on July 8 for Wayback Monday (Old School Baseball Night) and Trade-Any-Ticket Night on a Monday Buck Night presented by 95.3 FM 3WZ. The three-game homestand then concludes on Tuesday, July 9 with a $2 Walking Taco Tuesday presented by B94.5 and Jared Box Night.
Tickets for the three-game set, as well as every game on the 2019 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 on Thursday via the Spikes Radio Network, presented by Penn State Sports Medicine, Official Healthcare Provider of Penn State Athletics, at 6:50 p.m. with Spikes Live, presented by Mount Nittany Health, on the air from Eastwood Field. The Spikes' radio broadcast can also be heard worldwide through the "Listen Live" link on StateCollegeSpikes.com, provided by the club's flagship radio home, NEWSRADIO 1390 WRSC, as well as the TuneIn Radio app.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.