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Softball: Ohio State suffers first Big Ten loss with 8-6 defeat to Rutgers

Ohio State senior outfielder Bri Betschel (11) prepares to hit the ball against Indiana on March 24 during Ohio State’s 2-0 win. Credit: Gretchen Rudolph | For The Lantern

Ohio State softball suffered the first loss during the Big Ten season, losing the second game of the series against Rutgers 8-6.

The Scarlet Knights (17-19, 1-7 Big Ten) defeated the Buckeyes with an 8-6 win in an eight-inning game, leaving the Buckeyes at 22-11 in the year and 6-2 in the Big Ten.

“We need to be a little more clutch in certain moments,” Ohio State head coach Kelly Kovach Schoenly said. “I thought that Rutgers played a great game. When they got their moments, they took care of moments.”

Ohio State got on board in the bottom of the first inning. Sophomore designated hitter Kallie Boren recorded a two-run homer to left center to start the game off with a lead.

“It’s not really about me,” Boren said. “I hope to keep it up, keep producing offensively. It’s about how our team does.”

In the second inning, Rutgers countered with a single down the left field line. Senior pitcher Morgan Ray recorded a strikeout, limiting the damage. Sophomore first baseman Niki Carver blasted a solo home run to left center, recorded her second home run, extending the lead to 3-1 for the Buckeyes.

Rutgers gradually caught up with runs in the third and fourth innings, tying the game at 3-3.

Senior second baseman Emily Clark broke the tie. She doubled down the left field line, bringing the lead to 4-3 in the bottom of the fifth inning.

Rutgers turned the table in the sixth inning. Rutgers player shortstop Jess Hughes recorded a two-run homer to right center, giving the Scarlet Knights a 5-4 lead.

Freshman center fielder Meg Otte blasted a solo home run to right center, tying the game again in the bottom of the sixth inning.

Sophomore pitcher Lauren Rice opened the seventh inning with a strikeout. In the eighth inning, Rutgers player Katie Wingert and Nicole Bowman recorded three RBIs for Rutgers in the win.

“We are gonna come back better than ever, stronger than ever, and we are gonna fight back,” Piper said.

The final game against Rutgers Sunday has been changed to 11 a.m. due to weather condition.

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