Ohio State Shuts Out Ball State, 8-0, in Five Innings
April 17, 2013
COLUMBUS, Ohio - The Ohio State softball team downed Ball State, 8-0, in five innings in a contest that lasted just one hour and 17 minutes at Buckeye Field Wednesday evening. The Buckeyes (27-14, 6-6 Big Ten) improve to 16-6 all-time vs. the Cardinals (28-12, 12-0 MAC) with the run-rule victory.
Ohio State scored three runs in the third, three in the fourth and added two additional runs in the fifth to claim the win. Overall, the Buckeyes outhit Ball State, 9-2, in the contest. Offensively, Cammi Prantl went 2-for-3 with a run scored and a season-high four RBI, while sophomore Shelby Pickett was 2-for-3 with two runs scored, two RBI and a two-run home run. Junior Leesa Gresham went 2-for-3 with a stolen base vs. the Cardinals.
In the circle, Alex DiDomenico improved to 12-6 overall, throwing five shutout innings, limiting the BSU bats to two hits with a strikeout in five innings of work.
In the top of the second with two BSU runners on and two down, freshman Cammi Prantl came up firing to the plate on the Cardinals' first hit to left before sophomore catcher Shelby Pickett ran down the advancing runner back to the third base and got the tag on for the final out of the frame. Ohio State stranded a runner on second in the bottom half after Evelyn Carrillo began the at bat with an opposite field single to left.
The Buckeye outfield continued to show off its skills in the following inning when sophomore centerfielder Taylor Watkins caught the final out of the top of the third at the wall in left center, robbing Ball State's Jennifer Gilbert of an extra base hit. Watkins had to use every inch of her glove to extend out at the wall to make the spectacular grab.
Ohio State took a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the third after Prantl sent a two-run double to left center on a 3-2 pitch, allowing pinch runner Brittany Mills and Watkins to cross the plate. Prantl then scored to make it 3-0 from third base following an error by the BSU second baseman when she couldn't collect a throw down after Gresham stole second.
The Cardinals made a pitching change in the top of the fourth with no down after senior Megan Coletta and Pickett both singled up the middle. The bases were then loaded after sophomore Caitlin Conrad worked the count and earned a walk to bring up Watkins with one down. The native of Bonney, Lake, Wash., Watkins sent a sac fly to left field to score pinch runner Jesse Machovina and extend the Buckeye lead to four runs. Prantl then posted her third and fourth RBIs when she blasted a single up the middle to push Pickett and Conrad around the bases and give the Scarlet and Gray a 6-0 advantage after four innings.
After DiDomenico retired the side in the top of the fifth, Pickett ended the game with her first home run of the season when she crushed a 2-1 pitch over the wall in left center to end the contest, 8-0. The long ball was her first of the year.