April 25, 2007
ATHENS, Ohio - Freshman Marc Krauss hit two home runs, including a game-tying, two-run shot in the bottom of the ninth inning, to power the Ohio baseball team to a 7-6, walk-off win over Marshall in 11 innings Wednesday at Bob Wren Stadium.
"I haven't had a home run in a while so it was nice to get a couple today," Krauss said. "Once I hit it I knew that I got all of it and I was happy because it gave us a chance to win. I was looking to drive a fastball and got one."
The Bobcats (15-23) trailed 5-0 after four innings of play but battled back for the win. Ohio scored once in the fifth and three more times in the sixth before Marshall added a run in the eighth. Krauss came through in the bottom of the ninth with a two-run home run, his second long ball of the day, to send the game to extras. Ohio finished the comeback in the 11th, when junior Matt Stiffler (Bellbrook, Ohio) doubled and scored on a single by senior Jared Willis (Logan, W.Va.) coupled with a Marshall error.
"We have always battled back and a lot of times we have come up short," Krauss said. "This gives us some confidence heading into the weekend."
The Bobcats finished with seven runs on 11 hits and just one error in the win to move to 2-4 this season in extra innings and 14-9 at home. Krauss led the way and finished 2-for-5 with two home runs, three RBI and two runs scored. The home runs were the seventh and eighth of the season for the freshman Bobcat. The multi-home run game is the second of the season for Krauss, who hit three home runs March 27 in a home contest against Youngstown State. He leads Ohio with eight home runs on the season.
Senior Willie Walker (Marysville, Ohio) also had a big day at the plate as he went 2-for-4 with a walk, two runs scored and an RBI. Senior Bryant Witt (Powell, Ohio) finished 2-for-5 with two RBI while Stiffler was 2-for-6 with two runs scored.
Sophomore Matt Schlarb (Lexington, Ohio) earned the win with a scoreless 10th and 11th innings to move to 5-2 on the season. He allowed just one hit and no walks with two strikeouts in the outing. Junior John Angelicchi (Woodmere, Ohio) tossed 1.2 scoreless innings and allowed only one hit while junior Cody Neyman (Dravosburg, Pa.) tossed 2.1 innings and allowed just one earned run. Senior Dan Weiss (Cincinnati, Ohio) started the contest and allowed two runs in the first inning but retired the side in order in the second and third innings. He allowed the two runs on four hits in three innings pitched.
Marshall closer Nick Wolle took the loss and also suffered the blown save. He entered the contest with a 1.64 ERA and six saves but was touched for three runs, only one of them earned, in 2.1 innings pitched. Brandon Casamassima led the Herd at the plate as he went 3-for-5 with one RBI and two runs scored. The Herd wasted a fine start from Adam Dobies, who allowed four earned runs in seven innings pitched with six strikeouts.
Marshall reached Weiss for two runs in the first inning on four hits for an early 2-0 lead. Casamassima and Josh Valle collected RBI hits in the inning but Ohio escaped further damage when sophomore Brandon Besl (Cincinnati, Ohio) gunned a Marshall runner out at the plate to end the inning.
Weiss retired the side in order in the second and third innings and was lifted after three. Marshall added to its lead in the fourth inning with three runs. Valle, Blake Sanders and Nick Damas each tallied an RBI in the inning to give the Thundering Herd a 5-0 lead.
Ohio got on the board in the bottom of the fifth inning when Walker doubled to open the inning. He was still standing on second with two away, but Witt dropped an RBI single down the right field line to cut the Bobcat deficit to 5-1.
The Bobcats pulled within a single run in the sixth inning. Krauss got the rally started with one out when he launched a solo home run over the right field wall. The home run was the seventh of the season for Krauss and first since April 3. Besl followed the long ball with a double and came around to score on an RBI single by Walker. Witt made the score 5-4 three batters later with an RBI single.
The Herd plated an insurance run in the eighth for a 6-4 advantage. Nate Lape laced an RBI double to score Casamassima. Ohio had a golden opportunity in its half of the eighth when the Bobcats loaded the bases with one out but were unable to score. Besl drew a four-pitch walk to finally chase Dobies from the game and Walker also drew a walk on the new Herd hurler. After a strikeout, sophomore Chris Klimko (McKeesport, Pa.) worked a full-count and drew the third Bobcat walk of the inning but all three runners were left stranded.
Angelicchi worked around a leadoff single in the top of the ninth to keep Ohio's deficit at two runs. The escape act proved large in the bottom of the ninth as Stiffler reached on an error to start the inning and Krauss followed with a two-run shot to left-center to tie the game at six.
Both teams were unable to score in the 10th but Ohio broke through with the game-winning run in the 11th. Stiffler doubled with one away in front of Willis, who laced a single to left field. The Marshall outfielder misplayed the ball, allowing Stiffler to score and give the Bobcats a 7-6 walk-off victory.
Ohio will look to carry the momentum into Mid-American Conference play this Friday when they begin a three-game series at Kent State. The series begins Friday at 3 p.m. and can be heard on WATH 970 AM or online at ohiobobcats.com.