Jake Dahlberg’s effort not enough as Spikes take 2-1 defeat

UNIVERSITY PARK — Jake Dahlberg allowed just one run over seven innings for the second straight start, and took a no-hitter into the fifth for the State College Spikes, but it was not enough as the Tri-City ValleyCats used Oscar Campos ‘s two-out single in the ninth to capture a 2-1 victory on Monday afternoon at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park.

Dahlberg yielded three walks in the first five innings before Austin Dennis’s single to right field for the only hit against him on the day. The left-hander struck out eight batters, setting a new single-game high-water mark for himself as a professional, and lowered his ERA to 2.72.

The Spikes (11-19) also got a pair of doubles from Brady Whalen , who produced the second of consecutive two-base hits in the opening inning to give State College the first lead of the game. The first baseman then delivered another double, his fifth of the year, with two outs in the eighth, but was stranded.

Tri-City (18-12) responded to the Spikes’ marker with a run in the fifth. After Ramiro Rodriguez walked, Dahlberg committed one of his lone miscues with an errant pickoff throw to first, advancing Rodriguez to third base. Carlos Machado then delivered a sacrifice fly to center to tie the game.

The ValleyCats then rallied in the ninth as Michael Wielansky reached base on a one-out single against Kevin Hamann (0-1) and moved to second on a single by Machado. Campos then lined a pitch from Cory Malcom to center field to plate Wielansky and give Tri-City the advantage.

State College led off the ninth with walks drawn by Brandon Benson and Cameron Knight, but after a sacrifice bunt, Tim Hardy (3) struck out back-to-back hitters to end the game.

Hamann took the loss after being charged with the go-ahead run on a total of three hits and a walk over 1 2/3 innings.

Tri-City reliever Nivaldo Rodriguez (1-1) picked up the win with four scoreless innings of work. Rodriguez yielded three hits and struck out two batters.

Hardy pitched the ninth and earned the save.

The Spikes will now hit the road for a three-game series against the West Virginia Black Bears (Pittsburgh Pirates) at Monongalia County Ballpark. Left-hander Diego Cordero (0-0) is scheduled to start the series opener for State College. West Virginia’s starter is not yet determined.

After the trio of games in West Virginia, the Spikes will host the Auburn Doubledays (Washington Nationals) for a weekend series Friday through Sunday. Highlights of the homestand include a LaVar Arrington Appearance, along with a Spikes Pre-Game Team Autograph Session and a 2018 Team Poster Giveaway for the first 1,000 fans presented by Penn State Health, Official Healthcare Provider of Penn State Athletics on Friday, July 20, followed by a Myrtle Beach Trip Giveaway for one lucky fan 18 and over and FIREWORKS presented by VisitMyrtleBeach.com on Saturday, July 21.

Then on Sunday, July 22, the Spikes will take on the Doubledays at 6:05 p.m for the annual Paint the Park Pink event at the ballpark, presented by Mount Nittany Health, as fans can help raise funds and awareness for the fight against breast cancer.

The Spikes will wear special Pink Sunrise Jerseys, which will go up for bids in a Jersey-off-the-Back Auction to benefit the Mount Nittany Health Foundation. In addition, the first 1,000 fans will receive a Pink Sunrise Shirtsey, and fans will be dazzled by another Spike-tacular post-game FIREWORKS show.

Tickets for each game from Friday through Sunday, as well as the 2018 New York-Penn League All-Star Game presented by the Central PA Convention & Visitors Bureau, the 2018 NYPL All-Star Tailgate Gala presented by Reinhart Foodservice, and every game on the 2018 Spikes home schedule, are currently on sale through the Spikes Ticket Office.

Tickets can be purchased by calling (814) 272-1711 or by visiting the Ticket Office in person from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to the end of the game Friday. Fans can also buy and download single-game tickets by visiting StateCollegeSpikes.com.

Catch all of the action on Tuesday via the Spikes Radio Network, presented by Penn State Sports Medicine, Official Healthcare Provider of Penn State Athletics, at 6:50 p.m. with Spikes Live, presented by Mount Nittany Health, on the air from Monongalia County Ballpark. The Spikes’ radio broadcast can also be heard worldwide through the “Listen Live” link on StateCollegeSpikes.com, provided by the club’s flagship radio home, NEWSRADIO 1390 WRSC, as well as the TuneIn Radio app.