Revesz records history as baseball dominates


Junior outfielder TJ Sutton bats for Kent State during a 21-2 home win over Niagara on Wednesday, April 17. Photo by Brian Smith.

Kevin Battaglia

It was a night of history that the members of the Kent State baseball team and its 237 fans in attendance will never forget.

The fans applauded a ceremony that took place at Schoonover Stadium before the game recognizing and thanking everyone who made the addition of lights to Kent State’s baseball facility possible. After the game, KSU catcher Jeff Revesz and his teammates kept those fans clapping.

Revesz recorded history finishing with a 6-for-6 day at the plate as the Flashes (19-16, 9-3 Mid-American Conference) capped off a 21-2 victory over Niagara (11-24, 6-5 Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference) Wednesday at Schoonover Stadium.

Revesz’s six-hit game is a feat that had not been accomplished since Ty Carpenter did it Feb. 22, 1998, at Winthrop. Revesz also added three RBI and one run scored. He was given the opportunity to tie the record when Derek Toadvine hit a single to right field with two strikes and two outs in the eighth inning.

“It feels great,” Revesz said. “I didn’t even realize that I was that close [to the record]. I was just seeing the ball, trying to do what I can and hit it well somewhere.”

Flashes’ head coach Scott Stricklin said he is thrilled to see a player as hard-working as Revesz get the record.

“It’s really exciting for Jeff to do that,” Stricklin said. “It’s good to see a couple of those balls drop for him. He deserves it. He’s a hard-working kid, a great kid. The guys were really rooting for him.”

Sutton also had himself a day at the plate, picking up two hits, four RBI and two runs scored.

The win gives Kent State a five game winning streak, their longest of the season. They outscored Niagara 40-3 in two games. The bullpen, which had 11 players pitch in the last two days, held to Purple Eagles to a total of 11 hits.

“The past two days, we’ve really been hitting the ball well,” Sutton said. “But the past few weeks, we’ve been running the bases really well and have just been really aggressive. When you do that, you put pressure on the defense.”

Stricklin said after Tuesday’s 19-1 win over Niagara that he would like to see his team get off to better starts offensively.

Kent State came out swinging, batting around the order by scoring five runs on five hits in the first inning. Evan Campbell, George Roberts, Jason Bagoly and T.J. Sutton all singled in runs. Campbell and Bagoly were also each hit by a pitch and came around to score in the second inning to give the Flashes a 7-0 lead.

The early offense overshadowed a Kent State pitching staff on a 12 straight scoreless innings streak before giving up their first earned run in the fourth inning. Jordan Schwartz doubled to left-center field to score Greg Rodgers to cut the Flashes’ lead to 7-1 with two outs. Schwartz also singled to left field to score teammate Joel Klock in the sixth inning.

The Flashes answered with six and seven runs in the sixth and seventh innings, respectively. Bagoly, Sutton, Wagler and Revesz all drove in runs to push the lead to 13-2 in the sixth inning. Tommy Monnot started the scoring in the seventh with a two-run homerun to left field. Kent State finished the scoring when Derek Toadvine crossed the plate in the eighth to give the Flashes 21 run.

Pitcher John Birkbeck (1-0, 7.00) earned his first win of the season after two innings of work. Kyle Olver (3-5, 5.85), who Stricklin called the Purple Eagles’ best pitcher, received the loss after allowing five earned runs in two innings.

Kent State will set their focus to conference play as they prepare for a weekend showdown at Buffalo, who trails the Flashes by one game in the MAC.

Contact Kevin Battaglia at [email protected].