The 2009 Penn State baseball campaign got off to a rough start Friday as the Nittany Lions fell to St. John's, 15-6, in their first game of the Big Ten/Big East Challenge in Dunedin, Fla.
The Red Storm collected a single, double and triple in the first inning off of Penn State starting pitcher Mike Lorentson, scoring three runs to open the game. While the Lions scored two of their own in the bottom of the first, St. John's never looked back and finished the game with 17 hits.
First baseman Mike Deese led the way for the Lions, going 3-for-3 at the plate, walking twice and scoring twice. Penn State collected 11 hits in the game but struck out 14 times and left 13 runners on base.
Lorentson lasted four and two-thirds innings on the mound, allowing 10 runs -- 7 earned -- and 11 hits. Football cornerback Jesse Alfreno made his first career appearance out of the bullpen and retired both batters he faced in the eighth inning.
The Lions continue play this weekend 1 p.m. Saturday versus Northwestern in St. Petersburg, Fla., and 10 a.m. Sunday versus Seton Hall in Clearwater, Fla.