KALAMAZOO, Mich. -- The Ohio baseball team (19-21, 5-8 MAC) was edged by Mid-American Conference West Division foe Western Michigan (17-19, 7-9 MAC), 3-2, on Friday (April 28) in the opening game of a doubleheader at Robert J. Bobb Stadium at Hyames Field.
The Bobcats lead the Broncos, 15-12, in the top of the eighth inning of the second game of the twin bill. The contest was called due to darkness and will resume at 10 a.m. ET at Saturday (April 29).
Western Michigan produced a walk-off win in the bottom of the ninth inning of the first contest of the three-game weekend set. Redshirt senior right fielder Tyler Frank led off the frame with an infield single to second. He advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by senior second baseman Nick Vogelmeier, moved up to third base on a base hit by senior third baseman Grant Miller and tagged up and scored the game-winning run on a sacrifice fly to left by junior center fielder Tanner Allison.
The Broncos jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the home half of the third. Frank got things going with a leadoff single back up the middle and scored one out later on a base hit by sophomore shortstop Connor Smith. Smith then scored on a double to left center by Miller.
Ohio struck back with a run in the top of the fourth as sophomore first baseman Rudy Rott (Holmen, Wis.) shot a two-out single back up the middle, advanced to second and third on a base hit up the middle by senior second baseman Ty Black (Waynesville, Ohio) and an infield single by senior third baseman Connor Callery (Covington, Ky.), respectively, and then scored on a Western Michigan error.
The Bobcats evened the score at two-all in the sixth. Black hit a two-out double to left and scored the tying run on a single to left by Callery.
Unfortunately, the walk-off effort by the Broncos spoiled a strong start on the mound by redshirt junior southpaw Gerry Salisbury (Brunswick, Ohio), who struck out two while allowing two earned runs on seven hits and two walks over seven frames of work.
Senior right-handed reliever Jake Rudnicki (Toledo, Ohio) suffered the pitching defeat for Ohio, falling to 2-4 on the season. He fanned two while surrendering one earned run on two hits and three walks in two innings on the mound.
Callery tallied three singles to lead the Bobcats at the plate -- his 12th multi-hit game of the year. He extended his current hitting streak to a team-high 12 games. Black finished 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored. He recorded his 13th multi-hit game of the year, which is tied with Rott for second on the squad.
Smith went 3-for-4 with a triple, a walk, an RBI and a run scored to guide Western Michigan's bats. Miller recorded a double, a single, a walk and an RBI while Frank finished 2-for-3 with two runs scored.
Senior right-handed starting pitcher Kyle Mallwitz went seven innings on the hill for the Broncos, striking out three while permitting two runs -- one of which was earned -- on six hits. Sophomore righty Nic Laio was credited with the win on the mound, improving to 2-0 after pitching two innings of relief. He struck out three and gave up one hit.
After the conclusion of game two on Saturday, the Bobcats and the Broncos will play the third contest of weekend set.