March 2, 2018
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PENSACOLA, Fla. – The Ohio State baseball team got the weekend off to a good start on the shores of the Pensacola Bay with a 6-3 win over Nicholls State Friday afternoon at Blue Wahoos Stadium in Pensacola, Fla. With the win, the Buckeyes improve to 6-3 overall in 2018, while the Colonels fall to 1-8 overall this season. Left-handed stating pitcher Connor Curlis fanned seven over 6.1 innings, while junior second baseman Brady Cherry homered for the first time this year. Right-handed reliever Seth Kinker earned his second save of the season.
QUOTE FROM COACH
“Connor pitched well today and used his changeup and breaking ball to along with a good fastball,” head coach Greg Beals said. “He got some strikeouts with late fastballs and kept them off-balanced. We were held at bay offensively, but came out and got two doubles to score the first run in the fifth. If we can stay gap-to-gap and drive the baseball, this team has a lot of potential. It was great to see Brady put a good swing on that ball. He’s been working hard and we have all the confidence in him. A big home run that broke the game open.”
Curlis, from Findlay, Ohio, improved to 2-0 on the year after striking out seven over 6.1 innings and scattered two hits on two runs, one earned, and two walks. After the lead-off man got aboard in the top of the second, Curlis sent down the next 14 hitters. His seven strikeouts was a season-high.
COLONELS TAKE THE EARLY LEAD
Nicholls State took the 1-0 lead in the top of the first when Kyle Knauth knocked an RBI single to center field to score Ethan Valdez.
BUCKEYE SCORING PLAYS
The Buckeye bats woke up in the fifth inning, scoring five runs on four hits. Tyler Cowles got the hitting started when he ripped a double over the head of the NSU left fielder. Kobie Foppe then slapped a single through the left side to give Ohio State the lead. Cherry then rocketed the first pitch he saw against left-handed pitcher Alex Ernestine over the wall in right for a three-run home run, his first long ball of the year.
Ohio State added a run in the seventh when Foppe doubled to right center to score Dominic Canzone.
NICHOLLS STATE CUTS LEAD
The Colonels scored a run in the seventh and eighth to make it a three-run game. A RBI groundout by Dane Simon and solo home run by Kyle Knauth put the away squad within three.
— Ohio State Baseball (@OhioState_BASE) March 3, 2018
BULLPEN CLOSES THE DOOR
Right-handed reliever Kyle Michalik got a big strikeout and a ground out to leave the bases loaded in the seventh to keep the Buckeye lead. He pitched 1.2 innings on one hit, one run, one strikeout and one walk. Kinker threw a scoreless ninth to claim his second save of the season.
Ohio State faces No. 16 Southern Miss at 4 p.m. ET Saturday at Blue Wahoos Stadium. Junior right-hander Ryan Feltner gets the ball for the boys. The game will be televised live on Cox Sports Television and streamed on ESPN3 (blacked out in local markets).
RANDOM NOTES FROM AROUND THE BALLPARK
— Scott Brooks (@Brookzcom) March 3, 2018