May 9, 2004
COLUMBUS, Ohio – With Ohio State starter Scott Lewis out of the game, Penn State got the only run it needed to end the Buckeyes’ seven-game win streak in the top of the sixth handing Ohio State a 1-0 loss in the first game of a doubleheader Sunday at Bill Davis Stadium. The win by the Nittany Lions moved them into a tie with the Buckeyes for second place in the Big Ten standings with 14-8 records.
Jesse Paciorek (Jr., Lakewood, Ohio/Lakewood) started the sixth inning in relief of Lewis and getting a ground out, before a single through the left side by Milliron and a wild pitch put a runner in scoring position. Paciorek walked Clint Eury to end his day as Trey Fausnaugh (Fr., Circleville, Ohio/Westfall) came to the hill. He gave up a single up the middle to pinch hitter Lance Thompson and Milliron was able to slide past a throw from Mike Rabin (Jr., West Chester, Ohio/Lakota East) in center field to give the Nittany Lions a 1-0 lead.
Each team had five hits in the game, but the pinch-hit RBI by Thompson proved to be the difference as Penn State overcame the only error of the game.
Ohio State mounted a threat in the bottom of the third after a leadoff single to right-centerfield by Rabin. He stole second for his seventh stolen base of the season and was just the second base runner to reach second. With two out and Jacob Howell (Fr., Ashland, Ohio/Ashland) coming to the plate, PSU starter Sean Stidfole opted to walk the Buckeye rightfielder who had hits in four of his previous five at bats in the series. Steve Caravati (Jr., Dover, Ohio/Dover) flew out to right to end the inning. Penn State got its first runner into scoring position in the top of the fifth. Brett Showalter led off the inning with a single down the left-field line and moved to second on a stolen base before Lewis, a junior from Washington Court House, Ohio (Washington) responded with his fifth strikeout and then got a ground out and a fly out to get out of the inning.
Lewis made his 2004 home debut in only his third appearance and start of the season after undergoing Tommy John surgery last May. Facing a 75-pitch count, the 2003 Big Ten Pitcher of the Year struck out five batters through five scoreless innings. He allowed three hits and did not walk a batter. Lewis has yet to get a decision and has 17 strikeouts vs. three walks in 13.1 innings.
The Buckeyes wasted a one-out double by Rabin in the bottom of the fifth getting two straight ground outs to end the inning and that would prove costly as Penn State would break the scoreless tie on the top of the sixth inning with a single run off reliever Jesse Paciorek (Jr., Lakewood, Ohio/Lakewood).
Stidfole picked up the complete-game victory for Penn State (25-19 overall, 14-8 Big Ten) shutting out the Buckeyes on five hits. He struck out nine and walked three. Paciorek got the loss for Ohio State (26-18, 14-8) to fall to 1-3 on the season.
The teams will play one more game Sunday before concluding the four-game set Monday at 6:35 p.m. NPR 820 (WOSU-AM) will broadcast the Monday game, while the second game Sunday will be broadcast only on the Internet at www.wosu.org.