April 8, 2006
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State starting pitcher Dan DeLucia went the distance for his second complete game in a 4-1 victory over Illinois in the opening game of a Big Ten series Saturday at Bill Davis Stadium. The Buckeye offense backed him up with 13 hits to improve to a conference best 4-1.
DeLucia, a junior from Columbus, Ohio (Bishop Watterson) pitched all nine inning and equaled a career high with nine strikeouts against three walks. He allowed just the one run on six hits to improve to 5-1 this season. His five wins lead the Big Ten.
The Buckeyes supported DeLucia’s left arm with 13 hits and started the scoring in the first inning. It was the 15th game this season the Buckeyes had scored in the fifth inning. They have outscored their opponents 32-13 in the opening inning.
Ohio State scored twice in the bottom of the first inning to take the early 2-0 lead. Jonathan Zizzo (So., Youngstown, Ohio/Sarasota [Fla.]) led off the inning with a single to center field and went to second on a sacrifice bunt by Matt Angle (So., Whitehall, Ohio/Whitehall-Yearling). Zizzo went to third on fielder’s choice by Eric Fryer (So., Reynoldsburg, Ohio/Reynoldsburg). That put runners at the corners for Ronnie Bourquin (Jr., Canton, Ohio/Canton South), who sent a ball to the right-field corner to plate both base runners.
Fryer launched his third home run of the season against the wind out to left field and gave Ohio State a 3-0 lead.
Illinois (14-10, 2-3) got that run back in the top of the fifth inning on an RBI single down the left field line by Ryan Snowden. Ryan Hastings led off the inning with a single to left before a foul out and a ground out brought Snowden to the plate with Hastings at second. The Buckeyes (17-6, 4-1) turned a lead-off hit by Bourquin into their fourth run of the game. Jedidiah Stephen (Sr., Caldwell, Ohio/Shenandoah) singled through the left side to put runners at first and second. J.B. Shuck (Fr., Galion, Ohio/Galion) bunted both runners into scoring position before Bourquin scored on a ground out by Adam Schneider (Jr., Agoura Hills, Calif./Agoura) to give Ohio State a 4-1 lead.
Jason Zoeller (Jr., Verona, Pa./Shady Side Academy) finished 3-for-4 in the game, while Bourquin was 2-for-4 and drove in two runs. Angle, Fryer and Stephen had two hits and Fryer and Schneider added RBI. Chase Kliment was 2-for-4 to lead the Illini.
The teams will play another game Saturday before concluding the series with a doubleheader Sunday at 1:05 p.m. All three games will be broadcast on AM 920 WMNI.