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Marshall Offense Continues to Shine in 20-9 Win over Cleveland State

March 18, 2006

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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The Marshall baseball team tied season highs with 20 runs and 19 hits to coast to a 20-9 victory over Cleveland State Saturday afternoon at University Heights Field in Huntington.

Roddy Stieger (Sr., West Chester, Ohio) extended his hitting streak to a career-best 13 games with his second straight three-hit game. Brendan Murphy (Jr., Chattanooga, Tenn.) went 3-for-4 with two doubles, a home run and five RBI, and Adam Frederick (Sr., Franklin, Pa.) went 3-for-4 with four RBI. Aaron Levinson (Sr., Seattle, Wash.) homered, tripled and drove in three for the Thundering Herd (7-7).

Cleveland State (1-10) jumped out to a quick 5-0 lead in the first inning against Marshall starter Brian Chrisman (So., Pittsburgh, Pa.), with the big blow coming from Ryan Baechel, a grand slam to cap the inning.

Marshall chipped away at the lead, scoring two in the bottom of the first on a single by Stieger and a sacrifice fly by Levinson. The Herd tied the game in the second on a two-run single by Frederick and an RBI double by Murphy.

Marshall forged ahead for good with a five-run third inning, with all the action coming with two outs as six straight Herd batters reached base. After the Herd loaded the bases, Frederick ripped a single to right to score two, and Chris Monaco (Sr., Tucson, Ariz.) also scored on the play when right fielder Marc Sikora bobbled the ball for an error - one of eight Viking errors on the afternoon. After Rich Russell (Sr., Toronto, Ontario) coaxed a walk, Murphy ripped a double to plate Frederick, and Russell scampered home when left fielder John Westra bobbled the ball in the corner. The Herd finished the inning with a 10-5 lead.



CSU scored three in the fourth inning to cut the lead to 10-8 on consecutive run-scoring hits by Vasili Pahoulis, Westra and Josh Geric.

Marshall responded with a seven-spot in the bottom of the fourth. The first five Herd batters reached base, and the inning was highlighted by Murphy's three-run home run to left center, which gave Marshall a 17-8 advantage. The home run was Murphy's team-leading fifth of the season.

After Cleveland State scored a run in the top of the fifth inning, the Herd tacked on three more runs in the sixth inning on a Stieger RBI single and a two-run home run by Levinson, his first of the season.

The Herd bullpen of Jimmy Stanley (Fr., Lexington, Ky.), Mike Gielarowski (Fr., Pittsburgh, Pa.) and Andrew Hancock (So., Ashland, Ky.) was solid, allowing just one run and six hits in five innings of work. Stanley (2-0) was credited with the win, while CSU starter Josh Hungerman took the loss after allowing 10 hits and 10 runs (nine earned) in three innings of work.

The teams conclude the three-game series at 1 p.m. Sunday.