MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – It was a tough day for the Ohio State baseball team inside US Bank Stadium as it dropped a pair of games on Friday, falling 4-0 to Iowa and the losing 10-4 to Nebraska.
The Buckeyes are now an even 3-3 on season and will continue their four-game weekend in Minneapolis on Saturday with a game against Iowa. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. The weekend will conclude with one more game against Nebraska on Sunday morning at 11 a.m.
Mitchell Okuley hit two solo home runs in the game vs. Nebraska and now has three homers on the season. Brent Todys was also 2-for-4 against the Huskers and Sam Wilson collected a pair of hits on the day including a homer of his own in game two.
The Buckeye bats were limited to just two hits in the first game as Iowa opened the weekend with a 4-0 victory.
Seth Lonsway made his second start of the season and while he worked around some trouble, he pitched well and competing, keeping the Buckeyes in the game. He allowed four singles in the fourth inning and Iowa was able to score twice. But that was it. Lonsway went six innings giving up just those two runs on four hits while striking out nine.
Sam Wilson singled with one out in the sixth and Zach Dezenzo followed with a two-out single to put runners at 1st and 2nd. But the Iowa starter Trenton Wallace was able to retire Conner Pohl to end the threat. Those were the lone two hits in the game for the Buckeyes. Wallace also went six innings, striking out 10 while walking just a pair.
Iowa extended the lead to 4-0 with single tallies in the seventh and eighth innings. The Buckeyes then put two on via walks in the top of the ninth but the Hawkeyes were able to close it out without allowing a run.
The Buckeyes jumped-out to an early 1-0 lead on Okuley’s first home run of the day but Nebraska counted with a five-run second inning and the Huskers never looked back in a 10-4 victory.
Okuley hit a bomb to right field in the top of the second inning, giving the Buckeyes their lone lead of the day. Nebraska then got to Buckeye starter Garrett Burhenn in the bottom of the inning, scoring five times on four hits. The big blow came just when it looked like Burhenn was going to escape with allowing just two runs. Max Anderson hit a two-out, three-run home run to straight away center to cap the five-run outburst.
The Huskers then got two more runs off Burhenn in the fourth. The Buckeye righty went 5.0 innings in the game, allowing six earned on eight hits while striking out five.
In the fifth, after Brent Todys led off with a single, Sam Wilson jumped on a 2-1 offering from Cade Povich and lined it over the left field fence for his first home run of the season. That cut the lead to 7-3 and it stayed there until the Huskers added two more in the sixth and another in the eighth to stretch the advantage to 10-3.
Okuley’s second homer of the game came in the top of the ninth. He hit a shot to center where centerfielder Jaxon Hallmark tracked it and as he jumped, the ball hit his glove and fell over the wall.