LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Lindsay Bodeker threw her first career no-hitter as the No. 22/17 Ohio State softball team blanked Eastern Michigan, 11-0, in five innings Saturday night at Ulmer Stadium during the Courtyard by Marriott Airport Cardinal Tournament. The redshirt sophomore retired the side three times, struck out six in just 16 at bats to lead the Buckeyes to their seventh-consecutive victory and improve their overall record to 19-3 and drop Eastern Michigan to 7-10 on the season.
Bodeker’s no-hitter is the first for Ohio State since April 17, 2007, when Jamee Juarez threw a perfect game against IUPUI.
Run support was provided in spades as the Buckeyes scattered 11 hits on the night, including three homeruns – in the fifth inning. Sam Marder, Tory Haddad and Alicia Herron each belted round-trippers. Marder’s blast gives her a Big Ten-leading 10 this season and 34 for her career, moving the junior All-American to within seven of first place on the program’s all-time career homerun chart.
The first two innings went by in a blur as both teams sent just three batters to the plate in each of their respective half-innings. The Buckeye bats started firing in the third inning, however, as they Marder doubled home Leah Ledford, who reached on a walk to start the inning. The momentum carried over into the fourth when Ohio State exploded for four runs after loading the bases twice off four hits and capitalizing on an error and wild pitch by EMU. Rebecca Schultz scored, Herron came home on an error by the shortstop, Dee Dee Hillman singled home Ledford and Rachael Shepherd crossed the plate on a wild pitch.
Bodeker and the Buckeyes took care of EMU in the bottom of the fourth, recovering from an early walk and forcing a batter into a fielder’s choice to keep the side hitless, as they headed into the top of the fifth with a 5-0 lead. With bats blazing, Haddad rocked a shot over the leftfield wall and Whitney Cooper followed up with a long double to right center, putting herself in scoring position for Herron. The rookie shortstop then belted her third homer of the season to straight center, stretching the game to 8-0.
With the eight-run advantage needed for a “run rule” intact, Kady Caughenbaugh drove home Ledford and advanced Rachael Shepherd to third to go up 9-0. Marder, who had gone five games without a homerun, added two more insurance runs with a two-run shot over the right field fence.
Bodeker walked two in the bottom half of the fifth, but came out unscathed with two put-outs from the infield and a strikeout to end the game.
The Buckeyes wrap up play at the Cardinal Tournament at 10 a.m. Sunday with a second game against Eastern Michigan. They will open Big Ten play at 2 p.m. Saturday vs. Michigan State in the new Buckeye Field.