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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – No. 27 Ohio State dropped a 5-3 decision to Bethune-Cookman Monday afternoon in Daytona Beach.

Making his second start of the season, senior left-hander Eric Best pitched five innings, giving up five hits and two earned runs while striking out a batter. Outfielder Brian DeLucia finished 1-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored.

Three consecutive singles to lead off the top of the second put the Buckeyes up 1-0 after DeLucia drove in Ryan Dew but Bethune-Cookman starter Roman Lancara sat down 11 Buckeyes in a row after that before a Zach Hurley single in the sixth.

The Wildcats answered back in the fourth with a pair of runs on two singles and a double to take a 2-1 lead after four frames. Bethune-Cookman threatened again with runners on first and second with two down in the fifth but Best was able to get the punchout against Matt Wright.

The Wildcats were able to add two more in the sixth after Jared Strayer relieved Best to extend the lead to 4-1. Ohio State answered back with one in the eighth on an RBI single by Tyler Engle. The Buckeyes scored on more in the ninth on a single by Brad Hallberg but Engle lined out to center with the bases loaded to end the game.

The Buckeyes (12-5)Awill be back in action Tuesday to face Dartmouth in Winter Haven at 10 a.m.

Notes

– Outfielder Zach Hurley received his second career Big Ten Conference Player of the Week award, the conference office announced Monday. Hurley batted .643 (9-for-14) with nine runs scored, four RBI, three doubles and a pair of home runs as Ohio State won three games over Eastern Illinois, Bucknell and Army last week.
– It’s interesting that water surrounds Jackie Robinson Ballpark in every direction with a river to the north and west and a bay to the south and east.
– Jackie Robinson Ballpark is the home of the Daytona Cubs, Class A affiliate of the Chicago Cubs.
– The originally schedule 3 p.m. start time was pushed back 30 minutes to 3:30 p.m.
– The press box here at Jackie Robinson Ballpark sits a considerable distance up and not too far behind home plate so it seems like you are sitting just above the field. Also, the stadium has an old-fashioned manual scoreboard in left field.
– Both starting catchers (Ohio State’s Dan Burkhart and Bethune-Cookman’s Peter O’Brien) for today’s game are currently on the 2010 Johnny Bench Award watch list.