Flashes split doubleheader with OU

Lance Lysowski

Gallas hits .875, collects 4 RBIs

After dropping the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader 11-3, the Kent State baseball team overcame late fielding errors to defeat Ohio in the second game, 15-6.

The Flashes trailed 2-0 in the bottom of the third inning during the second game, but back-to-back singles by freshman second baseman Evan Campbell and junior first baseman Brett Weibley put runners on the basepaths for Kent State (27-19, 12-6 Mid-American Conference). Junior right fielder Ben Klafczynski was then hit by a pitch, loading the bases for senior left fielder Anthony Gallas, who hit a two-run single to right field to tie the game.

Photos: Tessa Bargainer

Audio and slideshow: Rachel Jones

Kent State coach Scott Stricklin said Gallas, who went 7-for-8 with four RBIs this weekend, continues to be a model of consistency this season.

“With his entire career he’s been really consistent, and he’s having his best year yet,” Stricklin said. “Hopefully he can continue to swing the bat and be the run producer we know he is as we continue into the tournament.”

Sophomore third baseman Travis Shaw followed with a fly ball to left field that Ohio junior left fielder Robert Maddox III dropped, which brought Gallas in for the score. With Kent State up 3-2, sophomore designated hitter Kyle McMillen drove in two more runs to put the Flashes up for the remainder of the game.

Kent State’s timely hitting has carried the team to wins in two of its last three series.

“You’ve got to have guys who perform in pressure situations,” Stricklin said. “Our guys, for the most part, have done that. That’s the encouraging thing. You get guys with two strikes or two outs and they’re able to find a way to get a base hit.”

After allowing two early runs to the Bobcats (13-29, 7-11 MAC), junior pitcher Kyle Hallock settled down to earn the win. Hallock pitched six innings to improve his record to 5-3 on the season, striking out six and allowing five hits.

“We needed a great start out of him,” Stricklin said. “He’s a guy we put a lot of trust in. He’s an upperclassman, but he started out a little shaky. He really settled in and gave us a really quality outing.”

After the five-run third inning, Kent State piled on eight runs in the fourth behind the bats of Weibely and Gallas to secure the rubber match against their MAC East Rivals.

In the first game of the series on Friday, the Flashes trailed 3-0 entering the seventh inning. Klafczynski and Gallas hit home runs to take the lead as junior pitcher Brennan Glass’s record improved to 4-0.

Maddox’s solo home run and Kent State lapses on defense led to an Ohio 11-3 victory in the first game Saturday.

The Flashes will return to action tomorrow, hosting Niagara at 3 p.m.

Contact sports reporter Lance Lysowski at [email protected].