March 22, 2021

Buckeyes Win the Finale vs. Rutgers 4-1



PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Good pitching and timely hits are the recipe for winning ball games and Ohio State followed the plan on Monday, winning the series finale with Rutgers 4-1.

Buckeye pitchers limited Rutgers to just one run on six hits while striking out 10. At the plate, freshman Kade Kern had three hits, including the go-ahead two-run single in the sixth.

Ohio State is now 6-5 on the season and will finally head home for its first games in Bill Davis Stadium next weekend. The Buckeyes will host a three-team pod with Iowa and Maryland starting Friday night at 5:05.

Starter Jack Neely made 37 pitches in the first inning, allowing one run on two hits and a pair of walks. But he only allowed three runners to reach over the next 3.1 and finished the day with five strikeouts and just three hits over 4.1 innings.

Reliver Patrick Murphy was the star of the day on the mound for the Buckeyes. He got out of a bases loaded jam in the fifth and allowed just one hit in 2.2 innings of scoreless relief. Murphy collected the win and is now 2-0 on the season.

TJ Brock came on and worked a perfect ninth on just four pitches to record his third save of the season.

Over the final two games of the series, Buckeye pitchers limited Rutgers to just three runs on seven hits.

Rutgers struck first again with a run in the opening inning. A pair of singles sandwiched a walk and the Scarlet Knights again played from in front.

In the fifth, Rutgers loaded the bases with one-out on two hit-by-pitches and a walk. Murphey came on in relief and he struck out Richie Schiekofer on three pitches and then got Ryan Lasko to groundout to short to end the threat.

Buckeye leadoff hitter Sam Wilson was then hit by a pitch with one-out in the sixth and Colton Bauer singled to put runners at first and second. Zach Dezenzo dropped a double in down the right field line to score Wilson and tie the game. After Rutgers starter Brent Teller was removed in favor of lefty Eric Reardon, Connor Pohl worked a walk to load the bases. Kern came through again with a single up the middle to score a pair and put the Buckeyes ahead 3-1.

The Buckeyes added another run in the eighth as Pohl and Kern each singled after Dezenzo was hit by a pitch. Mitchell Okuley hit a chopper to the left side and beat out the potential inning-ending double play to score a fourth run.

Bayden Root then came on to work the eighth and loaded the bases in the same fashion with a hit-by-pitch and two singles. He then struck out the next two hitters to wiggle out of the jam.

Brock’s four-pitch ninth was nice for the junior righty as he was coming off a blown save on Saturday afternoon.

The Buckeyes will start an eight-game homestand on Friday night vs, Iowa. First pitch is set for 5:05 p.m.