BATON ROUGE, La. Sam Marder and Alicia Herron each hit three-run blasts to fuel the Ohio State softball team’s 9-3 win over No. 5-ranked Texas A&M at the Easton Tiger Classic. The Buckeyes improve to 7-1 on the season, while the Aggies fall to 5-2 overall.
This is the Buckeyes’ second-consecutive win over a ranked team after they bested No. 21 LSU, 2-0, Friday night and the fourth against a Top 5 team since the 1995 season. The last time Ohio State defeated a team ranked No. 5 or above in the NFCA poll was March 1, 1998, with a 1-0 victory over fifth-ranked South Florida.
Marder’s homer is her fourth of the season, giving the USA Softball player of the year candidate 28 for her career and moving her to within one of second place in the record books behind Stacy Roth. Herron now holds two out-of-the-park shots to her credit in her freshman campaign.
Lindsay Bodeker earned her third win of the season in the circle after pitching 6.2 innings with five hits and striking out six.
After two scoreless innings, the Buckeyes exploded for four runs in the third. Kady Caughenbaugh, as a pinch runner for Rachael Shepherd, was sent home by a Brittany Goodchild RBI after Shepherd reached on a fielder’s choice. With runners on second and third, Marder hit her second homerun of the day to leftfield to put the Buckeyes on top 4-0.
In the bottom half of the inning, Texas A&M cut the lead to three when Kelsea Orsak scored on a fielding error by the Buckeyes. Bodeker responded by fanning the next two batters to end the inning.
The score remained 4-1 until Herron came to the plate in the top of the sixth with runners on the corners and sent her second career homerun over the right centerfield fence to pull ahead 7-1. The Buckeyes immediately loaded the bases and sent Rachael Shepherd home on a passed ball before Marder grounded out to third, scoring Dee Dee Hillman in the process.
With a 9-1 lead, Ohio State gave up one run in the bottom of the sixth and seventh innings, accounting for just the fifth and sixth runs allowed in the tournament. The Buckeyes have out-scored opponents 17-6 through three games this weekend and 64-17 on the season, leading the Big Ten in runs scored.
The Buckeyes wrap up play at the Easton Tiger Classic at 11:15 a.m. Sunday. As the only team with a 3-0 record in tourney play, they will play the next-highest seed after the conclusion of play Saturday.