February 15, 2020

Lonsway Fans 12 as No. 24 Ohio State Tops Pittsburgh 4-1

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NORTH PORT, Fla. – Redshirt sophomore left-hander Seth Lonsway struck out 12 in six innings as the No. 24 Ohio State baseball team picked up its first win of 2020 with a 4-1 victory over Pittsburgh Saturday night at CoolToday Park. With the win, the Buckeyes even their record at 1-1 on the year while the Panthers drop to 2-1.

Ohio State closes its opening weekend with an 11:30 a.m. matchup against Indiana State Sunday at North Charlotte Regional Park. Junior lefthander Griffan Smith will get the ball for the Buckeyes against Indiana State junior right-hander Connor Cline.

QUOTE FROM COACH
“We just didn’t play good baseball yesterday but today was a new day,” Greg Beals, Ohio State head coach, said. “It started on the mound. Our pitchers were terrific, striking out 18 batters. Seth really settled in and Bayden (Root) was lights out on the back end. We were solid on the mound but I also was really happy with how hard we hit the ball. Our offense was productive but we need to do better in some situations. We’re looking forward to coming out tomorrow to try to win the weekend.”

LONSWAY, ROOT SHUT DOWN PANTHERS, STRIKE OUT 18
Lonsway and Root combined to dominate a Panther lineup that combined for 25 runs through two games in 2020. Lonsway settled down after a rocky first to strike out 12 while allowing one earned run on one hit through six innings. Root then came out of the bullpen to punch out six while surrendering one hit in three innings for his first-career save.

“I just didn’t have my best stuff early on,” Lonsway said. “I was just happy to settle down and put our team in a good position to win. We got some timely hits and the defense played well behind me. Bayden came in and shut the door. He had his fastball and slider working and he’s tough when he has that going.”

EACH TEAM PLATES ONE IN THE FIRST
The Panthers got on the board first when Jordan Anderson drew a leadoff walk from Lonsway before advancing to second on a walk to Nico Popa and eventually coming around on a two-out single through the left side by Ron Washington, Jr. Ohio State answered right back against Pittsburgh starter Mitch Myers. Nate Karaffa singled to right to open the frame, advanced to third on a double down the left-field line by Dillon Dingler and scored on a groundout to short by Brent Todys.

BUCKEYES TAKE LEAD IN FOURTH, MYERS WORKS OUT OF TROUBLE
Ohio State took the lead in the bottom of the fourth when Conner Pohl doubled to right center and Zach Dezenzo followed with another double to right-center to plate the Buckeye first baseman. Scottie Seymour then walked and Nolan Clegg reached on a bunt base hit to load the bases with nobody out but Pittsburgh starter Mitch Myers was able to wiggle out of the jam, getting Matt Carpenter to strike out swinging before Noah West popped out to short and Karaffa fouled out to right.

TWO INSURANCE RUNS FOR THE BUCKEYES IN THE SIXTH
Dezenzo led off the sixth with another double to right-center before Seymour singled and Clegg walked to load the bases with nobody out against Pittsburgh reliever Mason Ronan. The southpaw was able to strike out Carpenter but West was hit by a pitch to plate Dezenzo and Karaffa followed with a fielder’s choice to score Seymour for a 4-1 Buckeye advantage.

Notes
– The game was played at CoolToday Park, the gorgeous spring training home of the Atlanta Braves which opened in March 2019.
– The two Buckeye sophomore arms combined to strike out 18 while allowing one run on two hits to a Pittsburgh offense that had scored 25 runs through their first two games.
– Lonsway’s 12 strikeouts tied for the third-most in his career. It was his fifth double-digit strikeout game in 18 career starts.

– Root tied his career-high six punchouts, tying for the second-longest outing of his career on his way to his first-career save.
– Karaffa picked up his first-career hit on a first-inning single.
– Dezenzo went 2-for-3 with a pair of doubles, tallying his first multi-hit game of the year after 13 as a freshman a year ago.
– Dingler went 2-for-4 with a double, notching his first multi-hit game of the season and 23rd of his career.