Herold keys Gannon’s split with Mercyhurst

Shayne Herold, Gannon University’s standout senior pitcher and outfielder, was awarded the week nine Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference baseball athlete of the week while leading the conference with a 1.07 ERA, and was also named Gannon’s co-male student athlete of the year.

Jared Wiesen, a freshman utility player, leads the team with a .349 batting average and said that Herold was one of the first veteran players he reached out to on the team for leadership.

“He was the one who always put in extra time to talk about the game, take extra swings in the cages and put some extra effort in to help my fielding,” Wiesen said. “Shayne definitely helped guide me through the hardships of being a freshman.”

Herold started in right field for Friday’s first matchup against Mercyhurst, and drove in three runs in Gannon’s 7-4 victory. Aaron Cox pitched a complete game and struck out eight while only giving up one earned run to improve his record to 6-0.

Herold pitched a complete game in Friday’s second contest with Mercyhurst. He gave up two earned runs and struck out seven batters to remain perfect on the season with an 8-0 record. Nico Baldelli, a senior catcher, had two hits in the game and batted in four runners in the Knights’ 7-2 win. Coach Nate Cocolin said Baldelli has done a good job anchoring the batting order and has played well defensively.

“He’s our rock behind the plate,” Cocolin said. “He’s been extremely consistent and has handled our pitching staff very well all year.”

Matt Tobin, a sophomore pitcher, gave up two earned runs in six innings of work in Gannon’s 2-1 loss to Mercyhurst in Saturday’s first matchup. Mercyhurst only had two hits in the contest while Gannon had nine, but the team was unable to give Tobin run support for a win.

Matt Wilwohl, a redshirt freshman pitcher and outfielder, dropped his record to 2-5 on the season with a 4-0 loss to Mercyhurst in Saturday’s weekend finale. Wilwohl pitched four innings and gave up three earned runs. David Spaeder, a junior pitcher, came into the game as relief and pitched two shutout innings.

The Knights conclude their regular season by hosting Slippery Rock University for two games Friday at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. at Gannon University Field. Gannon then goes on the road to Slippery Rock for two games Saturday at 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. Cocolin said he understands the playoff implications of this weekend.

“A bad weekend, and we could be out of the playoffs,” Cocolin said. “A good one and we could win the league.”

Wiesen said the need to have a strong weekend offensively and defensively has brought the best out of the team.

“It’s natural to feel some pressure with Gannon history on the line, but I feel like the team is staying loose,” Wiesen said. “We’re meshing together more now than we have all season.”

 

CONNOR SONDEL

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