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May 8, 2005

Box Score

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. – Ohio State scored 14 runs in the first inning and erupted for 33 hits in the game, including nine hits for extra bases, to beat Penn State 29-2 to take both ends of a Sunday doubleheader and clinch the four-game series with its third win this weekend. The series concludes Monday with a single game at 1:05 p.m.

The Buckeyes sent 14 batters to the plate before the first out could be recorded and every runner scored as the team batted around twice in the opening frame. Ohio State had 12 hits and benefited from four Penn State errors. The Nittany Lions went on to commit six in the game, while the Buckeyes defended perfectly.

Four runs crossed in the second and five runs scored in each of the third and fourth innings and the final run scored in the sixth. Penn State scored its runs in the fourth and seventh and finished the game with nine hits.

Ohio State used 16 players on offense and all but two batted in at least one run and all but two starters left the game entering the fourth inning. Cody Caughenbaugh (Jr., Newark, Ohio/Licking Valley) batted in four runs in a 2-for-4 effort that yielded his second home run of the year, a three-run blast to right in the third inning. Paul Farinacci (Sr., Westlake Village, Calif./Agoura) was 2-for-3 and added four RBI.

Mike Madsen (Sr., Canfield, Ohio/Notre Dame Cathedral Latin) was able to ride the distance to his second complete game of the year. He allowed the two Nittany Lion runs on nine hits and struck out three with one walk. Penn State used six pitchers in the game, though it was starter Steve Cline, who got the loss. He faced 10 batters in the first and did not record an out while allowing 10 runs (eight earned) on seven hits and a walk to fall to 3-4 on the year. For Madsen, it was his team-best fifth victory of the year and was the 22nd victory of his career.

The Buckeyes, who stranded nine runners on base, had nine extra-base hits in the game, including eight doubles. Farinacci had two doubles. Matt Angle (Fr., Whitehall, Ohio/Whitehall-Yearling) and Jason Zoeller (So., Verona, Pa./Shady Side Academy) were the only defensive players to start and finish the game. Angle was 3-for-7 and scored four times, while Zoeller was 3-for-6 with four RBI and three runs scored.

So far, in the three-game set, co-captain Mike Rabin (Sr., West Chester, Ohio/Lakota East) leads the team in going 8-for-10. He has three doubles, has driven in four runs and has scored eighth runs. He has a slugging percentage of 1.100 and an on-base percentage of .857. He has yet to strike out and has reached base by four walks. Rabin has reached base in 12 out of 14 trips to the plate. Fellow co-captain Steve Caravati (Sr., Dover, Ohio/Dover) is batting .600 (6-for-10) in the series with three doubles and a triple and five RBI. He also has a slugging percentage of 1.100 and an on-base percentage of .667.

The Buckeyes have now won seven games in a row and nine of their last 10. In the Big Ten, the team has won its last six and seven of its last nine games to climb out of the conference cellar as recently as April 29 when Indiana opened with a 10-1 win. Now the Buckeyes are in fifth place in the league and are poised to make the Big Ten tournament, an event the team has missed only once in head coach Bob Todd’s previous 17 years in Columbus.

Ohio State (27-17 overall and 10-10 in the Big Ten) and Penn State (24-20, 10-13) will conclude the series Monday with a single game at 1:05 p.m. The game will be broadcast on the Internet at www.wosu.org.