COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio softball team (26-13) continued showcasing their offensive power on Wednesday (April 18), defeating Ohio State (26-11), 7-0 inside Buckeye Stadium. The win for the Bobcats is the first victory over the Buckeyes since 2014 and the first in Columbus since 1997.
The Bobcats would strike first in the top of the first inning. Mikayla Cooper (Delaware, Ohio) led the game off with a stand up double to centerfield. She then moved to third on a single up the middle from Alex Day (Hilliard, Ohio). Day would move to second on a groundout, placing runners on second and third with one out. Next, Natalie Alvarez (Long Beach, Calif.) would reach first on a fielder's choice, allowing Cooper to score from third, giving Ohio a 1-0 lead.
Then with two outs, Morgan Geno (Chillicothe, Ohio) would draw a walk to load the bases. Then with two outs and the bases loaded MacKenzie Brunswick (Bellefontaine, Ohio) would crush a three-run triple off the wall in right center, clearing the bases and putting Ohio up 4-0 going into the bottom of the inning.
Ohio State would get runners on in the bottom of the first inning. Taylor White would lead off the inning getting hit by a pitch. Then, with Bailee Sturgeon at the plate, Alvarez would pick White off of first, clearing the bases. Then with two outs, Lilli Piper would single through the right side. Piper would then steal second, but starting pitcher Danielle Stiene (Loveland, Ohio) would strike out the final batter, sending the game to the second with Ohio leading 4-0.
The Bobcats would get runners on in the top of the second inning. With one out, Cooper singled up the middle. She would then move to second on a Bobcat groundout, putting a runner in scoring position with two outs. However, the Bobcats would not be able to push the run across and would go to the bottom of the second inning leading 4-0.
In the bottom of the second inning, Ashley Goodwin would single to lead off the inning. She would then be replaced on the bases by Andi Farrah. However, Stiene would get the next three batters out to send game to the third inning with Ohio leading 4-0.
Ohio threatened again in the top of the third inning. Alvarez led the inning off with a single to center, she then moved to second on a passed ball. Michaela Dorsey (Grove City, Ohio) would then hit a double to left center, putting runners on second and third with no outs. Geno would then draw her second walk of the game to load the bases, forcing Ohio State would then make a pitching change with no one out in the inning.
Brunswick would then hit into a fielder's choice, with Alvarez getting tagged out at the plate. Allie Englant (Long Beach, Calif.) would then come to the plate and single to shallow center, scoring Dorsey. With the bases still loaded, Taylor Saxton (Circleville, Ohio) would reach on a fielder's choice, keeping the bases loaded with two outs. Ohio State would get the final batter to fly out, but Ohio would add on and take a 5-0 lead to the bottom of the third inning.
With two outs, the Buckeyes would get a runner on again when Sturgeon reached on a single through the left side. However, Stiene would get the final batter to fly out to center, sending the game to the fourth with the Bobcats leading 5-0.
The Bobcats would add on in the top of the fourth inning. With one out, Katie Yun (North Canton, Ohio) and Alvarez would draw walked. Then with two outs, Geno would draw her third walk of the game to load the bases once again for Ohio. Yun would score on a passed ball, but the Ohio State defense would get the final out of the inning, sending the game to the bottom of the fourth with Ohio leading 6-0.
After an uneventful inning from Ohio State in the bottom of the fourth, the Bobcats would add on in the top of the fifth inning when Cooper crushed her 10thhomerun of the season off the leftfield foul pole, putting Ohio up 7-0 going to the bottom of the fifth inning.
After the Bobcats went down in order in the top of the sixth inning, Ohio State would get a runner on in the bottom of the frame when Piper led the inning off by reaching on an error. After Stiene struck out the next batter, the Bobcat defense would get Piper out at second and then the final batter of the inning to foul out, ending the inning with Ohio still leading 7-0.
Ohio threatened again in the top of the seventh inning. With one out, Englant reached first on an infield single. She then moved to second on a passed ball and to third on a wild pitch, putting her on third with one out. After Cooper drew a walk to put runners on the corners. Cooper would move to second on a passed ball, put Ohio State would get the final batter to strikeout, sending the game to the bottom of the seventh inning with Ohio leading 7-0.
In the bottom of the seventh inning, Ohio State would get a runner on with two outs, but Stiene would strike out the final Buckeye batter, ending the game and sending Ohio back to Athens with the 7-0 victory.
At the plate, the Bobcats scored seven runs on nine hits. The Bobcats were led by Cooper who went 3-for-4 with a double, homerun, RBI and two runs scored. Englant went 2-for-4 with an RBI, while Brunswick had a triple and three RBI. Dorsey added a double, RBI and a run scored, while Alvarez and Day both added hits for the Bobcats.
In the circle, Stiene got the start, going seven innings, allowing no runs on five hits, walked one and struck out eight on the way to her 16thwin of the season.
The Bobcats continue Mid-American Conference play this weekend when Ohio heads to Oxford, Ohio to take on Miami April 20-21. The Bobcats and RedHawks faceoff Friday at 3 p.m. and then the two teams will wrap up the series with a doubleheader on Saturday starting at 1 p.m.