May 19, 2001
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Nearly one full day after game five of the Big Ten Baseball Tournament was suspended because of rain, No. 1-seed Ohio State (42-15) and No. 5 Penn State (29-28) resumed play at Bill Davis Stadium Saturday. The Nittany Lions assured they would remain in Columbus for at least one more day, staving off elimination with a 4-3 win over the Buckeyes.
Penn State advances to play Michigan at 9:05 a.m Sunday. Ohio State will play the loser of the Minnesota-Illinois game tonight at 7:05 p.m.
Twenty-three hours and 13 minutes after the game was halted, it was restarted in the bottom of the third inning. PSU wasted little time and took a 1-0 lead. Willie Melendez led off with a walk off OSU reliever Josh Newman. Two batters later, Melendez scored on a single up the middle by Rod Perry. In the bottom half of the inning, the Buckeyes fired back. Joe Wilkins led off with a walk. Later in the inning, he scored on a two out base hit by Mike Check.
In the top of the fifth inning, the Buckeyes took a 2-1 lead. Nick Swisher led off and tied a Big Ten Tournament record with his third walk of the game. Swisher drew another base on balls in the top of the ninth to set the tournament record. A double by Doug Deeds pushed Swisher to third base. John Mayor followed and gave OSU its first lead of the ballgame with a sacrifice fly to center field to plate Swisher. In the bottom half of the inning, the Nittany Lions tied the game. With two outs, Mike DeRenzo scored on a single by Chris Netwall.
Both starting pitchers did not return to the game after the restart. OSU’s Kevin Goodrum went two innings, did not allow a hit, walked one batter and fired four strikeouts. PSU’s Mike Watson went three innings, gave up two hits, walked five batted and recorded two strikeouts. Josh Newman (8-3) picked up on the mound for the Buckeyes, going four innings. He allowed six hits, four earned runs and struck out one. After allowing two hits in the bottom of the seventh inning, Newman was replaced on the mound by Brandon Steen.
The first batter Steen faced, third baseman Chris Wright, slapped a two-RBI single to right field to push the Nittany Lions ahead, 4-2. Left fielder Rod Perry had led off the inning with a single to left field and moved to third base when second baseman Mike Derenzo followed with a double to the warning track in left field. Both came home on Wright’s double.
OSU cut the PSU lead to 4-3 in the top of the eighth inning. Christian Snavely singled to left field with one out. Catcher Joe Wilkins followed with a single to right field. Lance Rolston, pinch-hitting for Trent McIlvain, plated Snavely with a single up the middle. Wilkins moved to third, but the Buckeyes couldn’t bring him home to tie the score. OSU stranded 13 runners in the contest, leaving the bases loaded three times.
David Aardsma (3-5) picked up the win in relief for Penn State. He went six innings, allowing five hits and three earned runs. He walked four and fanned four.
Ohio State head coach Bob Todd
“We may have lost this game yesterday in terms of leaving runners on base. We left 13 runners on base. Three different innings we left the bases loaded. You can’t do that in a one-run ballgame. We left seven runners on in the first innings yesterday, then duplicated that today. Offensively, we didn’t generate enough offense.”
“I didn’t have my best stuff today. You can’t give guys free passes. I didn’t have command of any of my pitches.”
Penn State head coach Joe Hindelang
“I have the utmost respect for Ohio State and Coach Todd and what he has done here. For us to come here and beat them when we are playing out of the losers’ bracket is huge for us. I’m proud of our players.”