YPSILANTI, Mich. -- Sophomore first baseman Rudy Rott (Holmen, Wis.) went 3-for-5 with a pair of home runs and six RBIs, but the Ohio baseball team (16-18, 3-5 MAC) suffered a 12-9 setback at the hands of Mid-American Conference West Division foe Eastern Michigan (15-20, 6-2 MAC) on Saturday (April 15) at Oestrike Stadium.
The Eagles won the weekend series after posting an 8-2 victory in the Friday (April 14) series opener.
The Bobcats jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Senior center fielder Spencer Ibarra (Fort Collins, Colo.) led off the game with a home run. One out later, senior second baseman Ty Black (Waynesville, Ohio) doubled to right center and then scored on a base hit to right by redshirt junior starting pitcher Michael Klein (Highlands Ranch, Colo.).
Eastern Michigan answered with five runs over the first two frames to take a three-run lead, but Ohio responded with two runs in the third and two more in the fifth to jump back in front, 6-5. In the third, Ibarra sent a leadoff single to center, moved to third on a wild pitch and scored by way of a double to left center by Black. Black then scored one out later on a single to center by Rott, cutting the Eagles' lead to one run. The Bobcats regained control of the contest in the fifth when Klein singled through the left side to set the table for a two-run blast to center by Rott.
Ohio's lead was short lived, however, as a leadoff single by freshman Nick Jones and a walk by redshirt senior left fielder Mike Mioduszewski set the stage for a three-run home run by senior center fielder Jeremy Stidham to put Eastern Michigan back in control. Stidham's homer marked his fifth of the season. The Eagles then plated four runs on six hits in the eighth to make it a 12-6 contest.
The Bobcats shaved Eastern Michigan's lead to three runs in the ninth. Redshirt junior catcher Nick Bredeson (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.) led off with an infield hit to short, then Black singled through the right side. One out later, Rott homered to right center for his second round tripper of the day, but that's as close as Ohio got.
Ohio fell despite tallying 15 hits, with the top-five batters in the Ohio order recording multi-hit performances. Black doubled twice in a 3-for-5 effort that included an RBI and three runs scored. Ibarra, Bredeson and Klein each posted two hits.
The Eagles countered with 18 hits. Junior designated hitter Brennan Williams finished 4-for-5 with an RBI and three runs scored. Senior right fielder John Montgomery put together a 3-for-5 performance with five RBIs and two runs scored, tallying a double to go along with a two-run home run in the first -- his sixth dinger of the year. Jones went 3-for-5 with a run scored. Stidham and Schuemann each tallied a pair of hits.
Senior right-handed reliever Tom Colletti (Wheaton, Ill.) suffered the loss on the mound for Ohio, falling to 2-2 on the season. He gave up three earned runs on two hits and a walk in 0.1 innings. Klein went five innings for the Bobcats, allowing five earned runs on eight hits and three walks. He struck out one. Redshirt junior righty Cory Blessing (Mayfield, Ohio) threw 2.1 innings in relief for Ohio, fanning one but allowing four earned runs on six hits.
Sophomore right-handed reliever Davis Feldman earned the pitching victory for Eastern Michigan to improve to 1-3 on the year. He fanned four over four innings while giving up three earned runs on four hits. Junior right-handed starting pitcher Brad Allen tossed the first five innings, striking out two but surrendering six earned runs on 11 hits and a walk.
Ohio will look to bounce back in the Sunday (April 16 series finale against Eastern Michigan. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m. ET. Junior southpaw Butch Baird (Big Prairie, Ohio) will get the start on the hill for the Bobcats. The Eagles are set to send junior right-hander Brent Mattson to the mound. 'Voice of the Bobcats' Russ Eisenstein will have the call on WOUB 1340 AM and online on OhioBobcats.com via Stretch Internet.