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COLUMBUS, Ohio – Big Ten Conference leader Ohio State will host the Northwestern Wildcats in a three-game series this weekend at Bill Davis Stadium. The Buckeyes, 29-9 and 9-3 in the Big Ten, and Wildcats, 11-24 and 2-8, respectively, will play at 6:35 p.m. Friday evening and 1:05 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday.

POST-GAME FIREWORKS FRIDAY
The Diamond Club, the baseball program’s booster organization, will sponsor a fireworks display following the game Friday night.

POSSIBLE PITCHING MATCHUPS
Fri.  – RHP Alex Wimmers (7-1; 2.95) vs. LHP Joe Muraski (3-4; 5.14)
Sat. – RHP Dean Wolosiansky (8-1; 5.01) vs. LHP Eric Jokisch (3-4; 3.36)
Sun. – LHP Eric Best (6-1; 5.02) vs.  RHP Zach Morton (0-5; 5.68)

This Weekend in Ohio State Baseball

No. 23 Ohio State (29-9; 9-3 Big Ten Conference)

Game 40 vs. Northwestern (11-24; 2-8 Big Ten Conference)
Friday, April 24 – 6:35 p.m.

Game 41 vs. Northwestern
Saturday, April 25, 1:05 p.m.
 
Game 42 vs. Northwestern
Sunday, April 26, 1:05 p.m.

All Games at Bill Davis Stadium

BROADCAST RADIO
103.9 WTDA Talk FM

INTERNET AUDIO, STREAMING VIDEO & LIVE STATS
OhioStateBuckeyes.com

RANKINGS
Ohio State is ranked in one or more of the major polls for a ninth consecutive week, coming in this week with a high ranking of No. 23 by the  NCBWA. Collegiate Baseball ranks OSU 24th.

OHIO STATE VERSUS NORTHWESTERN
This baseball rivalry dates to 1913 and includes 124 games played. Ohio State leads the all-time series, 82 wins to 42. The teams split a four-game series last year at Rocky Miller Park. Some series notes:

Coach Bob Todd’s Buckeyes are 30-14 all-time vs. Northwestern.
Ohio State has won six of the 11 series since 1988, the first year for Todd at Ohio State and for Paul Stevens at Northwestern.
Ohio State’s last series win came in 2005, 3-1. Northwestern’s last only series win came in 1989, 3-1. The teams did not play in 2006-07.
The two teams tied in 2003 in a Big Ten series played at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. The teams have played to series ties four times.
Ohio State has either had a series win or a tie in each of the last nine series (six wins; three ties).

LOOKING IN THE REAR VIEW AT 2008
One of the few games the Buckeyes had some home run fun in last year came in a G3, 13-1, win over Northwestern. A stiff breeze, compliments of Lake Michigan, led to a three-home run inning for the Buckeyes with Ryan Dew hitting a three-run shot to left, Brian DeLucia hitting an insider-the-park grand slam and Dan Burkhart hitting his first career home run. A few other notes on the weekend:

Michael Arp (5-for-10; .500 with five runs scored) and Brian DeLucia (4-for-9; .444 with five RBI) had big weekends at the plate.
Ohio State’s 36 runs and 50 hits were 2008 series highs for the Buckeyes.
Both teams hit the ball well: the Buckeyes hit .357; the Wildcats .328
Jake Hale (8.0 IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 3 SO) and Dean Wolosiansky (7.0 IP, 9 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 SO) were outstanding in their winning performances on the mound.

HALE PITCHER OF THE WEEK
Senior relief ace Jake Hale has been named the Pitcher of the Week in the Big Ten Conference. The honor comes in the wake of the announcement that Hale is in the running for the fifth annual NCBWA Stopper of the Year Award. Over the course of 25 hours last weekend he saved all three wins in Ohio State’s 3-0 Big Ten series sweep over Purdue. Hale pitched a total of 5.1 innings in the Purdue series, surrendering four hits, no runs and two walks while striking out seven.

ALL-TIME AT BILL DAVIS STADIUM
Ohio State is 213-99 all-time at Bill Davis Stadium for a fine .685 winning percentage. The team is 5-3 at home in 2009.

AUDIO & VISUAL INFO
The entire Northwestern series will have an audio and streaming video broadcast available at OhioStateBuckeyes.com through the Buckeye Vision subscription service.

STOPPER OF THE YEAR WATCH LIST
Jake Hale is in the running for the fifth annual National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Stopper of the Year Award. He is one of 45 pitchers nationally and the only pitcher from the Big Ten Conference to be included in the USBWA’s midseason “watch list.”

PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
With Jake Hale earning pitcher of the week honors in the Big Ten this week, Ohio State players have now been recognized six times this season for the pitcher/player weekly award. The school record is seven times in 2004. Alex Wimmers (three times), Drew Rucinski, Dan Burkhart and Hale are the weekly winners.

HOME RUN HICCUP
Ohio State dropped a 20-8 game against Ball State Wednesday after leading, 5-0, entering the sixth. Three Buckeyes hit home runs in the game – Michael Stephens, Ryan Dew and Michael Arp. It was the first time all season the team has lost a game in which a Buckeye has hit a home run after 20 consecutive wins in such games.

NICE WORK BY OLTORIK
Freshman Ross Oltorik pitched five terrific innings against Ball State. He gave up just two hits, walked one and struck out five batters to tie his career best. He left after the fifth inning with the Buckeyes in front, 5-0.

MULTI-HIT GAME FOR McMANUS
Freshman T.J. McManus had his first multi-hit game with two singles in reserve duty Wednesday vs. the Cardinals. McManus was one of four Buckeyes with multiple hits. Michael Stephens and Dan Burkhart had three apiece and Matt Streng had two. Stephens led with three RBI.

10-YEAR SLUGGING HIGH
If the present rate continues, Ohio State will set a 10-year high for slugging pct. The team is currently slugging .508 with 139 extra base hits, including a single season-record challenging 22 triples (record is 25) and 43 home runs, a six-year best for the team.

LEADING THE WAY
Ryan Dew continues to lead the team in hitting at .386. Dan Burkhart has a one-RBI lead over Zach Hurley for the team lead, 43-42, with Michael Stephens now at 38. Jake Hale’s 1.12 ERA leads the team. Dean Wolosiansky and Alex Wimmers are 1-2 in wins with eight and seven.

A LOOK AT THE RECORDS
Ohio State is 24-6 in away or neutral field games…5-3 at home this season. The team is 12-3 in 1- and 2-run games and 13-1 in games it scores 10 or more runs. The team is also 25-1 when leading after the sixth inning and 25-0 when leading after the seventh. However, the team is 1-7 when trailing after the sixth and 0-9 when trailing after the seventh.

OHIO STATE SWEEPS AT PURDUE
Ohio State won both games of a Saturday doubleheader, 7-4 and 11-10, on top of a 1-0 win Friday to win all three games of the series against Purdue and move into first place in the Big Ten Conference with a 9-3 record. Alex Wimmers, Drew Rucinski in relief and Dean Wolosiansky picked up the pitching wins and Jake Hale relieved and got the save in all three games. Some more notes from a most successful series:

Cory Kovanda and Matt Streng led the team in hitting for the series as each hit .500.
Dan Burkhart and Michael Stephens were one-two in RBI with six and five, respectively.
The staff ERA was 3.67.
Boilermakers were 0-3 trying to steal on Burkhart.
Jake Hale pitched 5.1 innings in the three games, gave up four hits, walked two, struck out seven and didn’t give up a run.   

BACK-T0-BACK SWEEPS
Ohio State’s back-to-back sweeps the last two weekends of Michigan State and Purdue are its first consecutive sweeps in 10 years, or since the team swept Illlinois, Penn State and Purdue consecutively in 1999.

The attached release contains bio updates, more notes and tons of stats, including last 10 game stats, OSU vs. NU vs. OSU stats from last season and much, much more.

###OhioStateBuckeyes.com###