The Ohio State softball team failed to get a single hit in the first two innings.
But that was about it for the lull in the offense for the Buckeyes, with the team scoring six runs in the bottom of the third inning. The flurry of runs would be all Ohio State needed to beat Michigan State in a 6-2 win Saturday afternoon, clinching the series win.
Freshman Kallie Boren pinch hit for catcher Becca Gavin in the bottom of the third with the bases loaded and came through for her team, hitting a three-run double in the third inning to extend Ohio State’s lead to 6-0.
“Sometimes it’s just about timely hitting and Kallie stepped in when it was a really big moment and she took advantage of it,” hitting coach Jenna Hall said.
“I think I saw all of my teammates getting on base and I knew that I wanted to do something for the team,” Boren said. “I saw them pitching me inside, so I thought they were going to come in again and they did, and it was just there.”
Ohio State senior pitcher Shelby McCombs kicked off the scoring in the third inning, knocking in freshman third baseman Niki Carver with an RBI double.
White drew a bases-loaded walk that brought McCombs home. It was the second bases-loaded walk of the inning and seventh total walk issued in the game by Michigan State starting pitcher Bridgette Rainey.
“As the game evolves, you pay attention to what’s going on and you try to make adjustments and I think that our girls did a really good job of being patient for what they were looking for,” Hall said.
Michigan State freshman first baseman Riley Paxson responded to Ohio State’s scoring by hitting the first home run of her career in the top of the fourth inning.
With the win, Ohio State has taken the first two games of the series against Michigan State. But the Buckeyes had to snap a three-game losing skid that included a two-game sweep against Northwestern and a 7-0 blowout against Ohio University Wednesday.
“The season’s long and there’s adversity and there’s struggle and there’s positives and I think sometimes you just have to flow with it and learn and I think after this week and Wednesday taking a tough loss, they knew that they couldn’t sit on it,” Hall said. “They had to bounce back.”
The Buckeyes have outscored the Spartans 16-4 this weekend and will face Michigan State at noon Sunday eyeing a potential sweep in their final game of the weekend.
“I think we’re feeling really good. We feel on track and we’re working together,” Boren said. “Everything is clicking so I think tomorrow we’re going to come out fighting and hopefully get that win.”