May 4, 2005
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Host Pittsburgh was able to keep the Ohio State softball team’s offense from having the big inning it needed to overcome an early 3-1 deficit as the Panthers topped the Buckeyes, 5-2, in game two of a twin bill in Pittsburgh, Pa., Wednesday afternoon. After winning game one, 6-0, Ohio State (30-16, 7-7 Big Ten) sees its bid for a fourth-consecutive two-game sweep of a non-conference opponent stopped, while Pittsburgh (23-27, 8-6 Big EAST) knocks off Ohio State for the first time in four games this season.
Ohio State junior Chelsea Baker (Gahanna, Ohio/DeSales) saw her three-game winning streak come to an end, despite the fact she allowed just one earned run in her 5.1 innings of work. Four Buckeye errors led to four Pittsburgh unearned runs. Baker (6-3) struck out two Panthers and did not walk a batter.
Pittsburgh took a 1-0 lead in the first inning, but Ohio State tied the game in the second when junior Billie Jo Carder (Celina, Ohio/Celina) singled, moved to third base on ground outs by freshman Brittany Vanderink (Hiram, Ohio/Crestwood) and sophomore Christina Douglas (Mesa, Ariz./Dobson) and scored on an RBI single by freshman Liz Caputo (Riverside, Calif./Riverside Poly). It was Caputo’s 19th RBI of the season, of which 13 have come with two outs to share the team-lead for two-out RBI with two other Buckeyes.
Pittsburgh added two more unearned runs in the second inning to take a 3-1 lead before Ohio State brought the score to 3-2 with a run in the fifth. Sophomore Nycole Koyano (Walnut, Calif./Walnut) and senior Karisa Evans (Franklin, Ohio/Franklin) hit back-to-back singles and Baker drove in Koyano with a single of her own. It marked Baker’s fourth-consecutive game with at least one RBI, while Evans set a career high with two stolen bases in the game.
The Panthers scored their lone earned run of the game in the fifth to push their lead back to two runs, 4-2, and added another unearned run in the sixth. OSU sophomore Jamee Juarez (La Puente, Calif./Wilson) got the final two outs of the game for the Buckeyes, both on strikeouts. Laura Belardinelli (10-9) struck out two and went the distance for Pittsburgh.
Koyano finished the game 2-for-4 for the Buckeyes for her 13th multiple-hit game of the season. Sophomore Megan Schwab (Glendale, Ariz./Sunrise Mountain), who hit her 11th double of the season in the game, leads Ohio State in that category with 13 multiple-hit games.
The double-header Wednesday marked Ohio State’s final non-conference games of the regular season. The Buckeyes, 7-7 in the Big Ten and tied for fifth place, host Penn State at 6 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday in what will determine both teams’ seed in the upcoming Big Ten tournament May 12-14 at either Northwestern or Michigan.
### GO BUCKS! ###