March 30, 2014
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – The Ohio State softball team scored 22 runs on 25 hits to earn a doubleheader sweep of Indiana at Andy Mohr Field on Sunday. With the wins, Ohio State is 17-15 overall, 5-1 in the Big Ten and has won eight of its last 11 games. Indiana falls to 9-23-1 and 1-5 in the Big Ten.
Game One: Ohio State 12, Indiana 2
Six different players recorded multiple hits and Olivia O’Reilly earned her team-leading sixth win of the year as Ohio State opened the doubleheader with a convincing 12-2 victory over Indiana.
The Buckeyes’ offense got off to a fast start in the top of the first, scoring nine runs on nine hits while sending 15 batters to the plate. Leadoff hitter Caitlin Conrad tripled to center field and Taylor Watkins drove her home with a stand up double, making the score 1-0. The next batter, Cammi Prantl, sent a two-run home run to straight-away center field, her fourth of the season. The hit parade continued with the next batter, Evelyn Carrillo, who doubled to right field followed by a walk from Erika Leonard and single from Jayla Saibene to load the bases. Indiana made a pitching change, sending Lora Olson to the circle, but Melaina Saalfeld and Jesse Machovina hit back-to-back RBI singles to make the score 5-0. The Buckeyes tacked on four more runs before the inning was over thanks to a RBI groundout from Leesa Gresham, fielder’s choice from Conrad and RBI singles from Watkins and Prantl.
In the bottom of the first, O’Reilly quickly retired the first two batters but a walk, a single and an error allowed Indiana to plate a run. She struck out the next batter, Kassi Farmer, to end the Hoosiers threat.
Conrad tracked on a run for the Buckeyes in the top of the second when she doubled to left center and scored Keelia Nester, who reached on a fielder’s choice. In the third, Machovina singled up the middle with two outs and the bases loaded that scored two more runs, making the score 12-1.
Indiana had runners on second and third with no outs in the bottom of the third, but a ground out, a strikeout and a catch by Saalfeld on a well-hit liner ended the inning. The Hoosiers scored their only other run on an RBI single to center field.
At the plate, the top four hitters in Ohio State’s lineup (Conrad, Watkins, Prantl, Carrillo) went 9-for-15 with seven RBI. Machovina was 2-for-4 with three RBI while Saalfeld was 3-for-4 with an RBI and run scored. O’Reilly pitched five innings and scattered four hits while striking out seven and giving up just one earned run.
Game Two: Ohio State 10, Indiana 2
Ohio State’s offense continued its torrid pace in the second game, notching five extra base hits and scoring multiple runs in the second, fourth and fifth innings to claim a 10-2 victory.
The Buckeyes plated four run in the top of the second, the biggest hit coming from Carrillo, who singled to center field with the bases loaded to score two runs. Saibene started out the frame with a single, advanced to second on an error by the shortstop and eventually came around to score on a single from Machovina. Watkins also picked up an RBI in the inning with a single to left field.
In the top of the fourth, Ohio State pushed across four two-out runs, highlighted by a solo home run from Watkins and a two-run shot from Carrillo. For Carrillo, it was her third home run in the past six games.
The Buckeyes offense continued to roll in the top of the fifth as it tacked on three two-out runs. Pinch hitter Melissa Rennie started the rally after being hit by a pitch and the next batter, Conrad, walked. Watkins drove home pinch runner Nester with a single to second base and Prantl followed with a two-run double.
Carrillo paced the offense, going 4-for-4 with four RBI and a home run. It was the second time in the last six games she had four hits in a game. Watkins also chipped in with four hits and three RBI while Prantl went 2-for4 with two RBI. In the two wins, the top four Buckeye hitters (Conrad, Watkins, Prantl, Carrillo) combined for 17 hits.
In the circle, Hursh pitched five innings and surrendered four hits and two earned runs to get her third win of the year.
Ohio State returns to action when it travels to Ann Arbor, Mich. for a three-game series with No. 6 Michigan April 4-6.