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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – No. 13 Ohio State dropped a 12-4 decision, the first loss of the season, to Cincinnati Sunday afternoon in St. Petersburg.

Catcher Dan Burkhart led the Buckeyes offensively, going 3-for-4 with a double, an RBI and a run scored.

The Bearcats jumped out to the early 2-0 lead in the first. After Ohio State starter Brett McKinney loaded the bases after a pair of one-out walks, the freshman struck out Kiley Jones looking and induced a pop fly by Cory Hough but the ball popped out of second baseman Cory Kovanda’s glove and a pair of runs crossed home plate.

Cincinnati then used a pair of hit batsmen and two infield singles to add three more in the bottom of the second.

Michael Stephens put the Buckeyes on the board in the third, lining a 3-2 pitch with two down over the right field wall for a two-run home run but the Bearcats tacked on three more in the bottom of the fourth to make it 8-2.

The Buckeyes led off the fifth with three consecutive extra base hits: a triple by Zach Hurley, a double by Kovanda and a double by Burkhart to put two more on the board and again try to cut into the Cincinnati lead, now at 8-4. However, the Bearcats added one in the fifth and three more in the sixth to extend their lead to 12-4 and round out the scoring.

The Buckeyes (5-1) will be back in Florida next weekend, facing Duquesne Friday at 1 p.m. in Port Charlotte.

Notes

– A solid breakfast spread in the hotel this morning: eggs, bacon, sausage, potatoes, fruit, yogurt…just about everything.
– The team had a great debate about what kind of juice we had with breakfast. We couldn’t necessarily decide whether it was plain orange juice, tangerine-orange or grapefruit-orange. One way or another it was good.
– Game was delayed about an hour due to the Minnesota/Louisville game going late.
– For the fourth time in six games (the other two being the games he pitched), Dean Wolosiansky did not go a minute without having some kind of food in his hand.
– There are four fields right next to each other here at the Naimoli Complex which means foul ball coming from every direction.
– It was really windy this afternoon at the game. Out in the sun it wasn’t too bad but in the press box it was a bit chilly.
– Some good news for the Buckeyes, senior Eric Best saw his first action on the mound after offseason surgery and struck out two of the four batters he faced.
– Ohio State is now 65-21-2 all-time against Cincinnati.