Alex DiDomenico posted 17 strikeouts - now second on the OSU single-game strikeouts list.
April 10, 2013
ATHENS, Ohio - The Ohio State softball team swept a doubleheader at Ohio Tuesday, defeating the Bobcats, 4-2, in game one before winning, 6-1, in game two at Ohio Softball Field. Highlighting the twinbill was sophomore pitcher Alex DiDomenico, who posted a career-high 17 strikeouts in game two, marking the second-most strikeouts by a Buckeye in a single game in school history.
With the sweep, the Buckeyes (23-14, 3-6 Big Ten) improve to 44-20 all-time vs. the Bobcats (19-16, 4-4 MAC). Offensively, sophomore Maddy McIntyre batted .500 (3-for-6), including a double and triple, while junior Leesa Gresham, sophomore Taylor Watkins and senior Megan Coletta each had a home run vs. Ohio.
Game One: Ohio State 4, Ohio 2
Down 1-0, the Buckeye bats came alive in the top of the fifth, scoring four runs on two hits vs. OU starter Savannah Jo Dorsey. Ohio State claimed its first hit of the contest when freshman Cammi Prantl sent a single down the left field line, scoring pinch runner Jesse Machovina. Leesa Gresham followed with the big hit of the game when she sent a liner over the left field wall for a three-run home run to make it 4-1 in favor of the Scarlet and Gray. Sophomore Taylor Watkins was also on base on Gresham's long ball after being hit by a pitch for the second-consecutive at bat. The native of Fresno, Calif., Gresham now has a team-best nine home runs and 34 RBI in 2013.
The four runs would be all Ohio State would need as junior relief pitcher Kasie Kelly limited the Bobcat bats to one run on two hits with two strikeouts in four innings of work. Kelly a native of Wooster, Ohio, improves to 4-2 overall in 2013. Offensively, Gresham claimed the eventual gamewinner for the Buckeyes with her three-run blast in the fifth. She now has a team-best 10 multi-RBI games in 2013.
The Bobcats cut their deficit to 4-2 when Lauren Gellerman posted her second solo home run of the contest with a drive over the right center wall. However, Kelly ended any more damage when she got a called strike three to end the fifth.
The first two innings of game one were scoreless. Ohio State had a chance to take an early lead in the top of the first, but left the bases loaded after Dorsey induced a pop up to second base. Ohio State starting pitcher Olivia O'Reilly stranded two runners in the bottom of the second when she struck out Amanda Dalton.
The Bobcats struck first with two down in the bottom of the third when Lauren Gellerman knocked a solo home run over the center field wall on a nine-pitch at bat vs. O'Reilly. The OSU sophomore starter ended the frame with her third strikeout, getting Caitlin Colvin on a called strike three.
In the bottom of the fourth, Kelly came into the contest for O'Reilly with a runner on second base for her 12th appearance of the season. Sophomore catcher Shelby Pickett also was placed behind the plate for junior Melissa Rennie. Kelly retired three-consecutive batters in order to keep it a 1-0 score.
Overall, Ohio had four hits, while the Buckeyes posted three hits.
Game Two: Ohio State 6, Ohio 1
Guided by 17 strikeouts by Alex DiDomenico, the Ohio State softball team claimed the sweep with a 6-1 win in game two at Ohio Softball Field. The 17 strikeouts - second-most in school history - was one shy off the school record held by former Buckeye Kristi DeVries, who posted 18 strikeouts during the 2001 campaign. DiDomenico improves to 9-6 overall in her fifth complete game victory of 2013.
Offensively, McIntyre went 2-for-3 with a double and a triple, while senior Megan Coletta and sophomore Taylor Watkins each notched a home run and two RBI. Watkins, a native of Bonney Lake, Wash., now has 30 RBI and 30 runs scored in 2013.
Ohio State did not wait long to take a 1-0 lead on the Bobcats in game two as junior Evelyn Carrillo knocked a two-out double off the right center wall, scoring Prantl from first base, who singled up the middle vs. OU starter Lauren McClary in the top of the first.
In the bottom half, DiDomenico stranded two runners on base after fanning three OU batters. She continued to cruise in the circle with three more strikeouts in the second.
In the top of the third, the Buckeyes extended their lead to four runs vs. Ohio. After sophomore Caitlin Conrad was hit by a pitch, Watkins blasted a two-run home run off the scoreboard in center field to make it 3-0. Watkins now has seven home runs and 31 RBI (both career highs). McIntyre then posted a two-out triple over the bag down the left field line to push Carrillo around from first base. The big two-out hit was McIntyre's first triple of her OSU career.
The Bobcats got on the board in the bottom half when Gellerman continued her hot bat with a solo home run to right center to make it 4-1. But DiDomenico continued her streak, striking out the frame for the fourth-consecutive inning to mark 12 strikeouts through four innings of work. Her previous career-high was 10 strikeouts set in a 4-2 win over St. John's March 10.
After DiDomenico retired three batters in the fifth - all on strikeouts - Coletta crushed a 1-1 pitch with two outs over the center field wall to make it 6-1 Buckeyes to end OU relief pitcher Kaylin Clarke's night. She was replaced by Dorsey in the circle.
DiDomenico's streak was snapped at 15-consecutive strikeouts when Coletta caught a ball in foul territory down the third base line for the first out of the bottom half of the sixth. However, she claimed her 16th strikeout of the night to claim the second out, while Coletta left two runners on base when DiDomenico induced a groundout to the senior Buckeye. Her 17th and final strikeout was recorded in the bottom of the seventh.
The Buckeyes will next host Penn State Friday-Sunday in Columbus at Buckeye Field. Game one is set for 6 p.m. Friday vs. the Nittany Lions. The series will also be Alumni Weekend for the Scarlet and Gray. Check out the Buckeye Softball Facebook page for details on the activities throughout the weekend.
Humphrey Highlights | Taylor White