Ohio State Drops 8-7 Heartbreaker to Penn State
April 29, 2012
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – A walk-off home run by Sean Deegan with two down in the bottom of the 10th gave Penn State an 8-7 win over Ohio State Sunday afternoon at Medlar Field. With the loss, Ohio State falls to 24-20 overall, 8-10 in the Big Ten, while Penn State improves to 22-22, 8-7 in conference play.
The Nittany Lions took the lead in the top of the first against Ohio State starter John Kuchno. Steve Snyder reached on an infield single with one down and a single to center by Joey DeBernardis put runners at the corners. Jordan Steranka plated Snyder with a sacrifice fly to left and DeBernardis scored when Aaron Novak reached on a throwing error by Kuchno to make it 2-0 Penn State.
Ohio State answered with a pair against Penn State starter John Walter in the top of the second. Patrick Porter walked with one down, David Corna singled to right to put runners on the corners and Kirby Pellant lined an RBI single to right to plate Porter. After Walter struck out Aaron Gretz for the second out of the inning, the junior right-hander walked Tim Wetzel to load the bases and Ryan Cypret followed with a free pass to score Corna to tie the game.
Penn State then took the lead right back with three in the bottom of the frame. After a bloop single, a walk and an infield single loaded the bases with nobody out, Luis Montesinos lined a two-run single to right and J.J. White grounded into a double play to score a run and make it 5-2 in favor of the Nittany Lions.
Both pitchers settled down after that point until they were relieved in the 6th. The Buckeyes then threatened in the top of the seventh against Penn State reliever Mike Franklin. Wetzel and Cypret singled to put runners at the corners with nobody out but Franklin struck out Josh Dezse and induced fly outs by Mike Carroll and Brad Hallberg to end the threat and preserve the three-run lead.
Ohio State was then able to capitalize on its opportunity, tying it in the top of the eighth. A pinch-hit double by Brad Hutton led off the inning and Pellant and Greg Solomon were each hit by a pitch to load the bases with one down. Wetzel plated pinch-runner Joe Ciamacco with a bases-loaded walk, Cypret scored Pellant with an RBI fielder’s choice and Dezse reached on an infield single to score Solomon with the tying run.
Things stayed quiet as the game went to extras and the Buckeyes threatened in the top of the 10th. Ohio State put runners on second and third with one down but Solomon was cut down trying to score on a ground ball by Cypret. A walk to Dezse then loaded the bases and defensive substitution Ryan Leffel took a free pass to score Wetzel with the go-ahead run. Cypret then tallied another run on an error by DeBernardis at third base to make it 7-5 Ohio State.
After tossing a scoreless ninth, Dezse retired the first two batters of the bottom of the 10th before walking J.C. Coban and Elliot Searer to set up the game-winning home run.
Dezse went 2-for-5 with an RBI while Cypret finished 1-for-5 with two RBI and a run scored. Brett McKinney pitched well out of the bullpen, tossing 2.1 scoreless innings, striking out a batter.
The Buckeyes host Northwestern in a three-game set beginning Friday at Nick Swisher Field at Bill Davis Stadium.