April 17, 2002
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Dayton scored two runs in the top of the eighth inning on its way to a 4-3 victory over Ohio State Wednesday night at Bill Davis Stadium.
Kyle Brown (Jr., Washington Court House, Ohio/Washington Court House) gave up two runs in the eighth when in came on in relief for Trent Luyster (Fr., Flushing, Ohio/Harrison Central). Dayton centerfielder Rory Thornton walked and then Tom Beechem singled through the left side. A double steal moved both runners into scoring position and then Brown fielded a ground ball to retire Aaron Reesh at first, but Thornton was able to tie the game, scoring from third. A sacrifice fly by Shawn Bolinger gave the Flyers the lead, scoring Beechem who had advanced to third on the ground out.
Ohio State, now 21-9-1 overall, missed a golden opportunity in the bottom of the eighth, loading the bases without an out, but Dendinger grounded into a 5-2-3 double play that first caught Garrard, the tying run, at home. Designated hitter Lance Rolston (Jr., Athens, Ohio/Alexander) struck out to end the inning and strand the potential go-ahead run at second.
Brandon Steen (Sr., Hendersonville, Tenn./Hendersonville) came on to pitch the ninth for the Buckeyes. After hitting the first batter, he had two strikeouts in retiring the next three batters in order. But Ohio State could not get anything going in the ninth and dropped the one-run decision to the Flyers, which improved to 22-12 overall.
Beechem finished the game 2-for-4 and scored a run for Dayton and Bolinger knocked in two runs in a 1-for-3 night. Snavely led Ohio State was led at the plate going 2-for-5 with the single in the first and a two-run homer in the third. Garrard and Rabin also had multiple hits for the Buckeyes. After retiring the Flyers in order in the top of the first Ohio State took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the inning after a double by Brett Garrard (So., Brownsburg, Ind./Brownsburg) that scored second baseman Christian Snavely (So., Defiance, Ohio/Defiance). Snavely led off the inning with a base hit up the middle. The hit was his first in eight at bats.
Snavely sent a blast of the centerfield fence to score Mike Rabin (Fr., West Chester, Ohio/Lakota East) and give Ohio State a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the third. Rabin reached on a bunt down the third base line.
The three-run Buckeye lead nearly evaporated in the top of the fourth. Dayton got on the board on a home run over the fence in right-centerfield. Starting pitcher Chris Hanners (Fr., Groveport, Ohio/Desales) struck out the next batter but gave up hits to the next three batters. Second baseman Mike Kerins singled up the middle and then moved to third on a double to left center. Designated hitter Andy Boehmer batted in Kerins with a single through the right side parting Snavely and first baseman Doug Dendinger (Sr., Greenwich, Ohio/South Central).
Hanners pitched the first four innings giving up two runs, both earned, on a total of five hits with just one strikeout. He was replaced by Matt Davis (Fr., Mason, Ohio/William Mason) who gave up just one hit in two innings of work. The hit did not hurt the Buckeyes since Brooks Graff (Fr., Green Bay, Wis./Notre Dame Academy) threw out Beechem who was trying to steal second after singling through the left side. Davis sat the batters down in order in the sixth. Luyster came on to pitch the seventh inning and sat down the bottom three batters of the Dayton lineup.
Brown took the loss for Ohio State to fall to 0-2 on the year. He was charged with the two go-ahead runs off just one hit. Sam Fischer, who came on in relief for starter Jake Hanson, got his first win of the year, improving to 1-3.
First place Ohio State (9-3) will return to Big Ten play at second-place Indiana (8-4) this weekend. The two teams will play at 4 p.m. on Friday before playing a doubleheader on Saturday at 2 p.m. The series concludes with a single game Sunday at 2 p.m.