COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State softball team defended its first games as the No. 11 team in the nation, its highest ranking in program history, by shutting out Western Michigan, 2-0 and 1-0, in the final non-conference doubleheader of the season. With the wins, the Buckeyes improve to 40-7 on the season, while the Broncos fall to 19-19 overall.
Alicia Herron was responsible for plating both game-winning runs, sending home the first on a long a long sac fly in the first inning and the second on a RBI single to right field that scored Tory Haddad. Haddad went 3-for-3 in the second game in addition to scoring the lone run.
“I could not be happier with our pitching tonight,” head coach Linda Kalafatis said after the game. “We definitely rode the coattails of Lindsay and Kim when we could not get the run support in our at-bats. Bo threw with a lot of confidence in what I think was her best outing of the season.”
In the circle for the first game, Lindsay Bodeker struck out eight and gave up just one hit in her 11th complete game and seventh shutout of the season.
Kim Reeder picked up the win in the back end of the doubleheader, improving to 20-4 on the season and moving to within four of tying the all-time career win record of 76 set by Jamee Juarez during the 2004-07 seasons. She fanned eight batters on route to earning her ninth shutout of the season.
Next up: The Buckeyes travel to Evanston, Ill., Saturday and Sunday for a pivotal Big Ten series with Northwestern. The game pits Ohio State, the current Big Ten leader, and the No. 3 Wildcats against each other with the regular-season crown on the line. In its first year without a conference tournament, the Big Ten will send its regular-season champion to the NCAA Tournament with its automatic bid.