Feb. 24, 2007
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CATHEDRAL CITY, Calif. – 17th-ranked California entered play Saturday with a 2.75 staff earned run average, but the Ohio State softball team erupted for a season-high 10 runs in a 10-7 win Saturday night at the Palm Springs Classic at Big League Dreams Sports Complex in Cathedral City, Calif. The win is the second for the Buckeye (5-4) over a ranked team this weekend after topping No. 22 Fresno State Friday night.
Only 25 minutes after a heart-breaking loss to No. 10 Texas, the Buckeyes responded with a four-run first inning and never trailed the Golden Bears (9-6) in the game. Three times Ohio State retook the lead after Cal had tied the game.
“We had a couple miscues out there today and we certainly did not play our best defense, but we picked up for it with our sticks,” Linda Kalafatis, Ohio State head coach, said. “I thought we could have pulled out that first game today against Texas, but those kinds of teams know how to win close games like that. I thought Kim Reeder bounced back well and threw about as well as I’ve seen her. We’ll keep learning and getting better.”
Tied 7-7 after four innings, Ohio State took the lead for good with two runs in the fifth and one more in the sixth. From there, sophomore Kim Reeder (Salinas, Calif./Notre Dame H.S.) shut down the Bears to earn her third win of the season and second of the weekend.
With an RBI single in the fourth, OSU senior Jamee Juarez (La Puente, Calif./Wilson) drove in her 100th career run, becoming only the third Buckeye to reach 100 RBI. Not far behind, though, is senior Megan Schwab (Glendale, Ariz./Sunrise Mountain), who singled in a run in the fifth for her 99th career RBI.
Junior Brittany Vanderink (Hiram, Ohio/Crestwood) delivered a one-out RBI single in the fifth that gave the Buckeyes the lead for good.
The game began with a 34-minute first inning in which Ohio State batted around in the top half and scored four runs, only to see the Golden Bears tie the game with four runs of their own in the bottom half. For the Buckeyes in the first, delivering RBI singles were sophomore Courtney Pruner (Akron, Ohio/Ellet), senior Christina Douglas (Mesa, Ariz./Dobson) and freshman Whitney Cooper (Barstow, Calif./Barstow). Two walks and two Cal errors aided OSU’s run production and Cal starter Lauren Frankiewicz was pulled after five batters.
In the third, OSU junior Liz Caputo (Riverside, Calif./Riverside Poly) and senior Nycole Koyano (Walnut, Calif./Walnut) joined the RBI club with a single and sacrifice fly, respectively, while Douglas knocked in the Buckeyes’ final run in the sixth.
Freshman Megan Miller (Woodland Hills, Calif./El Camino Real) made her first collegiate start in the circle for Ohio State and pitched into the third inning. Three Buckeye errors behind her did not help her cause, but the OSU defense stepped up as the game went on, including a throw out at the plate from Koyano at second to catcher Sam Marder (Fr., Calabasas, Calif./Calabasas) and a double-play in the fifth that Reeder started.
Schwab, Pruner, Juarez, Douglas and Caputo all had three hits for the Buckeyes. Pruner scored a career-high three runs.
Ohio State concludes its stay at the Palm Springs Classic at 9 a.m. (PT) Sunday against undefeated and No. 9 Oklahoma.
### Go Bucks! ###