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Baseball: Ohio State falls to Purdue in first round of Big Ten Tournament

Ohio State sophomore pitcher Connor Curlis delivers a pitch in the top of the second inning against North Carolina Greensboro on April 22 at Bill Davis Stadium. Credit: Edward Sutelan | Assistant Sports Editor

Ohio State knew what this Purdue team was bringing to Omaha, Nebraska, taking two of three games against the Boilermakers in the final home series of the season from May 11-13.

However, the No. 7 Buckeyes saw a different result in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament, falling to No. 2 Purdue 8-2 on Wednesday afternoon.

Led by left-handed starting pitcher Connor Curlis, Ohio State pitchers struggled against the Purdue offense, allowing eight runs on 13 hits. With runners in scoring position, the Boilermakers recorded seven hits in 17 at-bats.

The Ohio State offense got off to a fast start against Purdue right-handed starter Tanner Andrews. Last facing the Boilermakers ace on May 11, who allowed four runs on nine hits in six innings, the Buckeyes scored two runs on an RBI double by senior left fielder Tyler Cowles, extending his 11-game hit streak.

After a 27-pitch first inning, Andrews found his groove on the mound, allowing two earned runs on six hits in his second complete game of the season. Striking out seven, the right-hander recorded 15 consecutive outs from the fifth to the ninth inning.

Purdue did not score its first run until the third inning, recording two base hits and a run on a groundout by shortstop Harry Shipley.

Purdue catcher Nick Dalesandro hit a single and advanced to third, scoring the tying run from an error by Ohio State freshman center fielder Dillon Dingler. With an opportunity to take the lead, Hunter hit a fly out to left field with Cowles then throwing Dalesandro out at home to keep the game tied.

Allowing two singles by Purdue right fielder Alec Olund and second baseman Tyler Powers, Curlis gave up an RBI single to shortstop Harry Shipley, allowing Purdue to take the lead in the fifth inning.

After giving up a single and a walk to start the sixth inning, Curlis’ day was done. He allowed five runs on eight hits and two walks, while striking out five.

As redshirt senior pitcher Kyle Michalik came it to relieve Curlis, the Purdue offense continued to roll, scoring five runs in the sixth on five hits and three walks, extending the Boilermakers’ lead to 8-2.

After the six-run loss to the Boilermakers, Ohio State will move to the loser’s bracket and will take on No. 6 Iowa in an elimination game at 9 a.m. Thursday.

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