READING, Pa. – The Gallaudet University baseball team wrapped up its North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) regular-season schedule with a clean sweep of first-place Penn St.-Berks on Saturday. The Bison (22-15, 10-4 NEAC West Division) won 6-2 and 15-5 at Hintz Athletic Field to hand the Nittany Lions (13-20, 10-2 NEAC West) their first conference losses of the season.
The wins help secure a winning season for the first time since 1976 for the Bison. Gallaudet is tied with Penn St.-Abington for second place in the conference as Berks still needs to play two more NEAC games. GU has locked up a playoff spot in the NEAC West Division Tournament that will take place next weekend.
The Bison scored a run in every inning of the second game as they pounded out 17 hits and hit six extra-base hits. Sophomore outfielder William Bissell (Brewer, Maine) jacked a mammoth grand slam in the seventh inning to put the game out of reach. The All-American finished 2-for-3 at the plate and scored and walked twice. Six different Bison had two or more hits in the win. Sophomore Chris Guinn (McLoud, Okla.) hit a home run and drove in three runs while picking up the win on the mound. Guinn pitched 5.2 innings and allowed five runs on four hits, walked four and struck out four. Senior William Chapman (Los Angeles, Calif.) and junior Tommy Barksdale (Brookeville, Md.) led the team with three runs scored and drove in a run each.
Ryan Tantala took the loss for the Nittany Lions as the starter went four innings and allowed seven runs on eight hits, walked five and recorded three strikeouts.
In the first game, Gallaudet jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead in the first inning and didn't look back. GU added four runs in the third inning to take a 6-1 lead as sophomore pitcher Marcus Smith (Baltimore, Md.) pitched a complete game where he allowed two runs (one earned) on seven hits, two walks and three strikeouts.
Sophomore catcher Casey Hicks (Henderson, Nev.) led the offensive charge by hitting a double and a triple, scored a run and collected two RBI. Chapman hit a double and added a single, scored two runs and drove in one run.
Penn St.-Berks starting pitcher Brent Rhoads pitched a complete game in the loss and allowed six runs (two earned) on eight hits, walked one and struck out nine Bison.
Gallaudet is slated to travel to Westminster, Md., on Monday, April 23, to face McDaniel College in a nine-inning tilt at 3:30 p.m.