Edwin Figuera collected three hits as the State College Spikes rallied from down 4-0 to put the winning run in scoring position in the ninth, but saw their comeback fall just short in a 4-3 loss to the Batavia Muckdogs on Monday night at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park.
Figuera’s trio of singles included a two-out hit that loaded the bases in the ninth. Delvin Perez then drew a walk to cut the Spikes’ (3-8) deficit to one run, but one batter later, Wood Myers hit a groundball that turned into a force play for the final out of the game.
Batavia (5-5) took the first lead of the game in the eighth inning thanks to a four-run burst that started with Michael Donadio’s two-run single. Sean Reynolds doubled in another run with two outs, and Albert Guaimaro knocked in another run with a single two batters later.
State College began its comeback in the eighth inning. With two outs, Perez doubled down the left field line and scored on Myers’s single. Justin Toerner then tripled in Myers to make it 4-2.
Chris Holba and Eli Kraus gave the Spikes a strong 6 1/3 combined innings on the mound. Holba, making his first professional start after Franyel Casadilla was promoted to Single-A Peoria earlier in the day, gave up two hits, a walk and a hit batsman while striking out four batters.
Kraus delivered 3 1/3 no-hit innings, yielding just one walk while recording five strikeouts.
Gabe Gentner (1-2) was charged with the loss after allowing two runs on two hits and a walk. Gentner struck out two batters in the effort.
Myers went 2-for-5 with a stolen base to bolster the Spikes’ offensive effort.
Batavia starter Logan Boyd threw five scoreless innings, allowing two hits and a hit batsman while striking out four batters. Reliever Humberto Mejia (1-1) then picked up the win with three innings of work in which he yielded two runs on five hits while striking out three batters.
Jameson McGrane (1) finished the game by allowing one run on one hit and three walks for the Muckdogs, but ended up with the save. McGrane also struck out one batter in his affiliated minor league debut.
Tuesday, the Spikes and Muckdogs finish their three-game series at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park with a 7:05 p.m. game. State College is set to send right-hander Winston Nicacio (0-1) to the hill. Batavia is slated to start right-hander Alberto Guerrero (1-0) on the mound.