One big inning wasn’t enough for Greyhound baseball as they fell short in their season opener Saturday afternoon against the Mechanicsburg Wildcats on the road, 4-3.
The Shippensburg (0-1) offense collected three runs on three hits to open the scoring in the top of the fourth, but could not hold the Wildcats over the final three frames. Mechanicsburg (1-0) answered with two runs in the bottom of the fifth and single runs in their next two plate appearances, winning the game with a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the seventh frame.
The fourth inning rally began with back-to-back hits by the top of the Greyhound batting order. Lead-off man Jake Frey laced a liner to left and Max Kalb, the Ship No. 2 hitter, reached on a bunt single to put runners on the corners with nobody out.
Scott Witter drove in Frey with an RBI groundout, while Kalb later scored on a wild pitch. Nic Weltz worked a walk to continue the rally, and Christian Melendez singled him home for the Greyhounds' third run of the frame.
The offense handed a 3-0 lead to starting pitcher Ethan Stouffer, who held the Wildcats scoreless through the first 4 innings Saturday.
The senior right-hander allowed a single and a walk before being lifted for reliever Kyle Levy with one out in the fifth, and a two-out double off the bat of Mechanicsburg's Sam Zercher allowed both baserunners to come around to score.
The two runs were charged to the line of Stouffer, who received a no-decision after allowing a total of 2 runs on 2 hits and 3 walks over 4.1 innings.
Mechanicsburg tied the score in the sixth after a leadoff walk crossed home plate on a two-out infield single off the bat of Taylor Shearer.
Following a 1-2-3 top of the seventh, a single, error, and walk loaded the bases with Wildcats in the next half inning. Nick Tomasko then skied a fly ball to center that plated teammate Josh Jamiolkowski to secure the Wildcats’ walk-off win.
Mechanicsburg out-hit Shippensburg 5-to-3 and were aided by four Greyhound errors.
Wildcat pitching held the Greyhounds without a hit save for the 3-run fourth. Zach Russell got the start and lasted four innings, striking out four and allowing 3 earned runs.
Harry Fegan picked up the win after tossing 3 scoreless innings of relief.
The Hounds' season opener had been originally scheduled for Friday, but was moved to Saturday because of heavy rain Thursday into Friday.
Shippensburg looks to shake off the season opening loss when host rivals Big Spring for their home opener Thursday at 4:15 p.m.