April 1, 2005
COLUMBUS, Ohio – In its 2005 Big Ten opener, the Ohio State softball team (16-9, 0-1 Big Ten) took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning, but host Wisconsin (10-11, 1-0 Big Ten) tied the score in the bottom of the first and scored the game-winning run in the sixth to take a 2-1 win over the Buckeyes Friday evening at Goodman Field in Madison, Wis.
The Buckeyes outhit the Badgers, 7-6, but dropped their first of what will be six-consecutive Big Ten road games to start the league schedule. The six-game road stretch marks just the second time in program history Ohio State must play its first six Big Ten games all away from Columbus.
Three of Ohio State’s seven hits came in the first inning as sophomore Nycole Koyano (Walnut, Calif./Walnut) led off the game with a single to right field and later scored on a two-out RBI single up the middle by sophomore Christina Douglas (Mesa, Ariz./Dobson). Koyano had advanced to second base on a sacrifice bunt from senior Karisa Evans (Franklin, Ohio/Franklin) and took third on a ground out by sophomore Megan Schwab (Glendale, Ariz./Sunrise Mountain).
Sophomore Jamee Juarez (La Puente, Calif./Wilson) suffered the loss in the circle to see her record slip to 12-7 on the season. She struck out four Badgers and allowed just six hits, but Wisconsin’s Kris Hatcher’s home run to lead off the sixth inning proved to be the game-winner for the Badgers. Hatcher’s homer was her team-leading fifth of the season and the 16th of her career, which added to her school record and helped Wisconsin pitcher Eden Brock improve her record to 8-4 on the season. At the plate, Juarez was a perfect 3-for-3 to extend her career-best hitting streak to nine games and notch her first career three-hit game after collecting two hits in a game 18 times previously in her career. One of her hits was her third career triple, that coming with one out in the sixth inning, but she was stranded at third base. She singled in the first after the Buckeyes had scored their first run and she singled again in the third inning, which loaded the bases for Ohio State with two outs, but Brock was able to work out of the jam.
The RBI for Douglas in the first inning was her 18th of the season, which trails only teammate Megan Schwab’s 28. Schwab’s RBI total is tied for third in the Big Ten and she entered the game riding a career-best 10-game hitting streak, but was held without a hit in the game to snap her streak.
Ohio State entered the game 15-2 when scoring first and 13-1 when outhitting its opponent but sees a loss added to those records.
Wisconsin tied the game in the bottom of the first inning with Sam Polito was hit by a pitch and later scored on a two-out single up the middle by Boo Gillette, a 2004 third-team All-Big Ten selection.
The Buckeyes and Badgers will meet again Saturday at noon (CST) before OSU heads on to Minnesota for a double-header against the Badgers Sunday.
### GO BUCKS! ###