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Baseball: Ohio State aims to continue success against Iowa

Ohio State sophomore catcher Dillon Dingler (10) swings at a ball during the game against Michigan on April 12. Ohio State won 10-5. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo Editor

The Ohio State baseball team will target its third straight series win against a Big Ten foe when it hosts Iowa this weekend.

Iowa (24-15, 9-6 Big Ten) will come into the weekend having won five of its past six games. The Buckeyes (23-18, 6-6 Big Ten) have used their big bats to win seven of their past nine games.

The Ohio State bats have been on fire over this nine-game stretch, hitting 16 home runs. The Buckeyes have hit 44 home runs on the season, the most in the Big Ten.

In terms of pitching, Iowa falls in the middle of the pack. The Hawkeyes post a 4.06 ERA, the sixth-best in the Big Ten.

Iowa’s top thrower is junior pitcher Grant Leonard, who holds a team-best 1.29 ERA and nine saves in 18 appearances, the second most of any pitcher.

Junior pitcher Grant Judkins has dominated in the starting role for the Hawkeyes. In 10 starts, Judkins has a 4-4 record with a 1.88 ERA in a team-leading 62.1 innings of work.

As a team, the Hawkeyes have only allowed 20 home runs on the season.

The Hawkeyes will be tested against the home run hitters of Ohio State. Junior right fielder Dominic Canzone leads the team with 11 home runs, while senior left fielder Brady Cherry is second with 10.

Offensively, the Hawkeyes offense is hitting .266 with a .374 slugging percentage.

Junior catcher Austin Martin leads the team with a .324 average, driving 25 RBI, the second-most on the team. Iowa junior outfielder Ben Norman leads the team with six home runs and 30 RBI.

Ohio State will begin its series against Iowa at 6:35 p.m. Friday. The 3:05 p.m. Saturday game will be followed by the finale at 12:05 p.m. Sunday.

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