COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State was searching for something to go right and Colton Bauer’s bomb deep into the night was exactly what the team needed. The two-run home run in the bottom of the 10th gave the Buckeyes a 5-4 walk-off victory over Youngstown State on Tuesday night.
The Buckeyes snap their skid and improve to 9-16 on the year while YSU falls to 10-18 overall.
Ohio State led 3-1 headed to the top of the ninth but the Penguins scored twice to even the score and then took a 4-3 lead on a 2-out triple in the top of the 10th. Pinch-hitter Drew Reckart opened the bottom of the 10th with a walk and then Bauer crushed his third home run of the season. It was Bauer’s first walk-off home run of his career.
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Freshman Jacob Gehring made his first career start and went 3.0 innings, striking out five and only allowing one run. Senior co-captain Griffan Smith threw another scoreless inning and looks to be returning to the form he showed in 2019.
Freshman Gavin Bruni was impressive, striking out six in the two innings he worked. Redshirt-freshman Tim Baird worked the seventh and eighth innings, allowing just one hit while striking out a pair. Fellow freshman Jake Johnson came on to record the final out of the ninth and then worked the 10th, picking up his first victory on the season.
In addition to Bauer’s heroics at the plate, Zach Dezenzo, Trey Lipsey, Mitchell Okuley and Brent Todys each had singles. Marcus Ernst reached base via the walk in four of his five trips.
Bauer was hit by pitch in his first at-bat in the second inning and after advancing to third, he scored on a two-out RBI single by Todys to put the Buckeyes in front 1-0. YSU answered right back in the top of the third as Lucas Nasonti tripled to start the inning and later scored on a wild pitch.
The score stayed tied 1-1 for the next four innings until the Buckeyes struck for a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh. OSU took advantage of the Penguins struggles on the mound as they drew four walks and scored both runs on wild pitches.
Youngstown State scored two times in the ninth on a walk and three singles to tie the game at 3-3. The Penguins then got a two-out RBI triple off the bat of Seth Lucero to take their first lead of the night at 4-3.
YSU closer Nathan Ball then came on in the bottom of the 10th to give up the walk to Reckart and the home run to Bauer. The home run by Bauer went an estimated 434 feet.
The Buckeyes will look to carry this momentum into the weekend when they host Michigan State in a three-game Big Ten series. First pitch Friday is set for 6:05 p.m.