Venditti Dominant as Panthers Split with Saginaw

Nick Venditti
Nick Venditti

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Junior Nick Venditti (Brecksville, Ohio) threw a four-hit shutout as Ohio Dominican's baseball team won game one of its GLIAC doubleheader with Saginaw Valley 7-0. The Cardinals bounced back to score three runs in the seventh of game two and take a 4-3 win.

With the split, ODU is now 19-19 overall and 11-13 in GLIAC play, one game in front of Tiffin (11-15 GLIAC) for sixth place in the conference. Saginaw Valley, which took three out of four in the series, moved to 18-18 (14-10 GLIAC).

Venditti earned his fifth win of the season with an 85-pitch masterpiece, tossing his second complete game in 2012. He threw 52 of his pitches for strikes, walked just one and struck out two as the Cardinals put just two runners in scoring position the entire game.

After being stifled in Saturday's doubleheader, Ohio Dominican's offense responded early by jumping out to a 4-0 lead though three innings. Freshman Jake Simmerman (Westerville, Ohio) had an RBI single, driving in junior Ryan Rovnak (Poland, Ohio) in the first. Senior Evan Shaw (Delaware, Ohio) followed with an RBI double in the second, and redshirt sophomore Christian Prince (Hudsonville, Mich.) also had an RBI single as the Panthers pushed their lead to 3-0. Senior Tyler Zaidel (Cincinnati, Ohio) also had an RBI baseknock in the third to push the lead out to four.

That was more than enough for the junior right hander, who worked out of a two-out, first-and-third jam in the third with a punchout, then allowed just one hit in the fourth and fifth innings. A single and an error with two outs in the sixth represented SVSU's other scoring opportunity, but Venditti closed the frame with a fielder's choice groundout.

ODU would tack on three more runs in the seventh as the Panthers pounded out 12 hits in the opener. Zaidel finished 3-for-3 with a walk, his second three-hit game of the season, while Shaw and Prince both had a pair of hits.

The second game featured a wild six-run seventh inning, with neither team being able to hold on to a lead.

SVSU scored the game's first run on the benefit of two hits and a passed ball in the first inning to go on top 1-0. The score stayed that way through six innings as the Panthers could only get two runners into scoring position – both in the fourth – without scoring.

Momentum changed in the seventh, though, as senior John Bowron (Dayton, Ohio) singled to lead off the inning and pinch hitter Billy Tecklenburg (Troy, Ohio) also singled. Junior Chase Westphal (Brecksville, Ohio) followed with a walk to load the bases and Zaidel's single back up the middle made it a 1-1 game.

With the bases still full and no one out, Shaw drew a walk to give ODU it's first lead, and a wild pitch scored Westphal from third and put the Panthers in front 3-1. With still nobody out, another walk to Rovnak reloaded the bases, but the next three Panthers were retired to keep the lead at one.

That proved critical in the bottom half as the Cardinals rallies. Back-to-back singles and an error set the stage for the comeback, scoring the first run. Another basehit tied the game at three, and after an intentional walk loaded the bases, another free pass resulted in the winning run for SVSU as the Panthers failed to register an out in the final frame.

The seventh inning ruined a quality start for freshman Alberto Canales (West Park, Fla.), who went six innings and allowed three unearned runs. He yielded six hits and struck out two in an 89-pitch effort.

Sophomore Anthony Raschilla (Girard, Ohio) had two of ODU's six hits in the nightcap.

Ohio Dominican is off until Saturday when the Panthers welcome Hillsdale for the first two of a four-game weekend series. First pitch is slated for 1 p.m. from Panther Valley.

Contact: Scott Miles
miless@ohiodominican.edu