April 2, 2017
cred: Press Pros Magazine
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COLUMBUS, Ohio – Despite a quality start from fifth-year senior pitcher Jake Post, the Ohio State baseball team was edged by Purdue, 2-1, in the finale of a three-game series Sunday afternoon at Nick Swisher Field at Bill Davis Stadium. With the loss, the Buckeyes fall to 11-16 overall and 1-5 in Big Ten play, while the Boilermakers improve to 15-12 overall and 3-3 in conference action.
“I thought both of our pitchers did very well today,” head coach Greg Beals said. “We gave up just one earned run, two runs total – that should be enough runs to win a ball game on Sunday. We had our opportunities and had situations to win the game today. We need to find a way for our guys to compete with some confidence and that’s what we are missing right now. Our guys are trying too hard in those critical situations.”
Post received the tough-luck loss, allowing two runs, one earned, in six innings of work with five strikeouts to drop to 1-2. Right-handed reliever Seth Kinker was just as solid on the mound, tying his career high with five strikeouts in three scoreless innings of relief work. Purdue starting pitcher Mike Kornacker improved to 1-0 on the year, limiting the Buckeye bats to one run on two hits with three strikeouts in five innings. Boilermaker reliever Cameron Williams picked up his second save of the season, throwing two scoreless innings with three strikeouts. In the box score, Jalen Washington was 2-for-3 with two doubles and a run scored and stolen base.
OHIO STATE SCORES FIRST IN THE FOURTH
The Buckeyes took advantage of some control issues by Kornacker in the bottom of the fourth. Kornacker hit both Washington and Noah McGowan with one down. A heads-up play by Washington then occurred as the OSU captain stole third base to set up Zach Ratcliff at the dish. The fifth-year senior got a pitch to hit on a 3-2 count and hit a line drive to left field to push Washington home.
PURDUE TAKES THE LEAD
Post cruised through the opening five frames, but ran into trouble in the sixth. After a lead-off single to left, a sac bunt was put down, but both runners reached safely as the throw to first base was offline. A sac bunt followed before Skyler Hunter knocked a 2-2 pitch back up the middle to plate both runs and give Purdue the lead, 2-1.
CHANCE IN THE SIXTH
Ohio State had a golden opportunity to answer quickly vs. the Boilermakers in the bottom half of the sixth. With one down, Washington doubled for the second time in the game, this time off Purdue left-handed reliever Ross Learnard to put runners on second and third with no down. Kornacker had to leave the game with a 1-0 count due to injury, but a strikeout in the turf turned into a double play when Jacob Barnwell was tagged out at the dish for the second out. A fly out to center field then left Washington on second base.
CAN’T PUSH A RUN HOME IN THE EIGHTH
The Buckeyes left two on base in the eighth vs. Williams. Both West and Tre’ Gantt reached base safely on a walk and sac bunt. But Williams got Barnwell to foul off a pitch on a sac bunt attempt on a 3-2 count for the first out before a fly out and strikeout ended the OSU threat.
ON THE MOUND
Post received the tough-luck loss to drop to 1-2 on the year. In another quality start, the fifth-year senior worked six innings and gave up two runs, one earned, scattering five hits with five strikeouts and no walks. Kinker started the eighth and was locked in on the mound, striking out five in three scoreless innings of relief work.
Ohio State wraps up its nine-game homestand against Kent State at 6:35 p.m. ET Wednesday at Nick Swisher Field at Bill Davis Stadium. The game will be streamed on BTN Plus ($).