March 22, 2011
DURHAM, N.C.-The Ohio baseball team got a sterling pitcher-by-committee effort on the mound to defeat the ACC's Duke Blue Devils 6-3 Tuesday evening at Jack Coombs Field.
The win moved Ohio to 11-9, while Duke dropped to 15-8.
Ohio reliever Brett Barber (2-0) was credited with the win, giving up a run on two hits with two strikeouts and one walk in two innings of work. Marck Paliotto got his third save by throwing the game's last one and a third innings, with one run on one hit with two walks.
Duke starter Eric Pfisterer (1-2) took the loss as he gave up three runs on five hits with five strikeouts and four walks in six and one-third innings.
Ohio second baseman Bryan Barnes had two hits on the evening and center fielder Ethan Newton scored twice.
Duke second baseman Marcus Stroman went 3-for-4 with two RBIs, while left fielder Anthony D'Alessandro contributed a 2-for-4 effort.
Ohio designated hitter Kory Burkhart gave the Bobcats the early 1-0 lead when he drove in Newton with a solid single back through the infield in the top of the third.
Third baseman Dan Ward then made it 2-0 in the fourth when he crushed a triple into the gap in left center, scoring catcher Trace Voshell, who drew a leadoff walk. Ward then scored the inning's second run when he deftly avoided a tag attempt by Duke catcher Michael Rosenfeld on right fielder Adam Gecewich's sacrifice fly to center.
Stroman made the score 3-1 when he drove in D'Alessandro with a run-scoring single through the right side in the bottom of the fourth.
Stroman cut the lead to one with a bases-loaded single to left in the sixth, scoring third baseman Jordan Betts, but Ohio reliever Ben Trimbur got consecutive strikeouts to leave the bases juiced without further damage.
The Bobcats tacked on three insurance runs in the ninth off Duke reliever Drew Van Orden. The first came home when Barnes was plunked by a 2-2 offering with the bases loaded and the second scored when Duke shortstop Matt Berezo booted a two-out groundball by the next batter, left fielder Jensen Painter. Catcher Kyle Dean then drew a bases-loaded walk to force in the third run.
The Blue Devils were able to muster a run-scoring single to right center by D'Alessandro in the bottom of the ninth for the final margin.
In all, Ohio used seven pitchers in the game and the group stranded 12 Duke baserunners.
The Bobcats will begin Mid-American Conference action at Ball State with a three-game series that starts Friday at 3 p.m. ET.