April 17, 2005
COLUMBUS, Ohio – An Ohio State win in the final game of the four-game Big Ten series against Michigan State appeared to be slipping away when the Spartans tied the game in the top of the ninth inning with a grand slam, but freshman outfielder Matt Angle responded in big fashion by driving in the winning run in the bottom of the inning to lead the Buckeyes to a 8-7 victory Sunday at Bill Davis Stadium.
Ohio State built five-run leads in the third and fifth innings, but Michigan State cut the lead to four, 7-3, on a home run by Sean Walker in the seventh. In his next at bat with the bases loaded in the top of the ninth, he sent the first offering from new pitcher Trey Fausnaugh (So., Circleville, Ohio/Westfall) over the fence in left field to tie the game and put the pressure on the Buckeyes to prevent the first sweep against the Buckeyes in stadium history.
With one out in the bottom of the ninth, Eric Fryer (Fr., Reynoldsburg, Ohio/Reynoldsburg) singled through the right side and stole second before pinch hitter Cody Caughenbaugh (So., Newark, Ohio/Licking Valley) was intentionally walked by Michigan State reliever Drew Mahan. Angle, who is from Whitehall, Ohio (Whitehall-Yearling), delivered a single up the middle to score Fryer from second and give the Buckeyes the one-run victory.
Fausnaugh got the win (2-1) despite the giving up the grand slam. He replaced starter Trent Luyster (Sr., Flushing, Ohio/Harrison Central) with one out in the ninth after he gave up a lead-off double and allowed two more to reach, courtesy of a throwing error and an infield single. Luyster allowed six runs (five earned) on 11 hits and struck out four while walking just one. Mahan, son of MSU head coach Ted Mahan, got his first loss of the season (0-1).
Jedidiah Stephen (Jr., Caldwell, Ohio/Shenandoah) led the Buckeyes in going 3-for-4 at the plate. He scored once and drove in a run with a double in the third inning. Jacob Howell (So., Ashland, Ohio/Ashland) was 2-for-5 and scored once while Fryer finished 2-for-5 with a pair of RBI.
The Buckeyes turned a lead-off double and a walk into the first two runs of the game. Jason Zoeller (So., Verona, Pa./Shady Side Academy) doubled to the right-field corner for a double and then Paul Farinacci (Sr., Westlake Village, Calif./Agoura) drew a walk. The two were bunted over on a sacrifice by Stephen. Zoeller scored on a ground out by Fryer and then Chris Macke (Fr., Terre Haute, Ind./Terre Haute North) singled to center to plate Farinacci and give the Buckeyes a 2-0 lead.
Ohio State scored three more runs in the third inning to take a 5-0 lead. Howell led off the inning with a single to left, stole second and then scored on a double down the left-field line by Farinacci. Stephen singled to left to put runners at the corners. Farinacci scored on a ground out by Fryer.
In the top of the fourth inning, Alan Cattrysse launched his second home run of the season to put Michigan State on the board, 5-1, and then in the fifth the Spartans were able to score another run when Oliver Wolcott crossed the plate when the Buckeyes tried to turn a 3-6-3 double play, but only got the front end. Troy Krider was able to beat out the second throw and Wolcott, who reached on a lead-off drag bunt, scored the Spartans’ second run of the game.
Two more runs crossed the plate in the bottom of the fifth inning as the Buckeyes were able to retake a five-run lead. Farinacci led off with a walk and scored on Stephen’s double to right-center field. Angle drew a two-out walk and then Mike Rabin (Sr., West Chester, Ohio/Lakota East) knocked in Stephen with a single up the middle.
Walker finished 2-for-4 with five RBI and two runs scored, while Sontag, Krider and Wolcott each had two hits for Michigan State (15-18 overall and 6-6 in the Big Ten) which was out-hit by the Buckeyes 13-12. Each team had one error.
The Buckeyes (18-13, 4-8) return to action next weekend at Michigan. The series begins Friday with a nationally televised game on ESPN at 7:05 p.m. The teams then will play a doubleheader Saturday at 4:05 p.m. before concluding the series with a single game Sunday at 1:05 p.m. All four games will be broadcast on NPR 820 (WOSU-AM) and on the Internet at www.wosu.org.
Some Ohio State schedules list a home game Wednesday against Bowling Green, but that contest was cancelled. The next home game will be April 27 against Eastern Michigan at 6:35 p.m.