There were a lot of crooked numbers on the scoreboard and when the final out was made, Louisville emerged with a 13-12 victory over Ohio State Wednesday night in a non-conference contest at Bill Davis Stadium (box score).
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Seven runs crossed the plate in the first inning when Ohio State was able to claim a 5-2 lead, but the Cardinals pulled within one, 5-4, with two in the third before getting their big inning, scoring four times in the fourth to move ahead, 8-5. They scored another run in the fifth and the Buckeyes answered with two in the bottom of the frame to close to a 9-7 score. Each team scored twice in the sixth and Louisville appeared to be in control with two more in the seventh to build a 13-9 lead.
Ohio State scored three unearned runs in the eighth to pull within the 13-12 score and the potential tying run was nabbed at the plate for the final out. Louisville threatened in the ninth, but the Buckeyes escaped unscathed. The Buckeyes got the lead-off man on in the bottom of the ninth and sacrificed him to second, but Tony Kennedy and Cory Kovanda struck out to end the game.
The teams combined for 37 hits, 19 by the Cardinals and 18 by Ohio State.
The Buckeyes got a long ball from Justin Miller, who finished the game 5-for-5 with five RBI and three runs scored. His other four hits were singles. His home run was just the eighth hit by a Buckeye this season. Tony Kennedy was 3-for-6 and scored twice while the Buckeyes also got multiple hits from J.B. Shuck, Zach Hurley, Dan Burkhart and Brian DeLucia, who provided Ohio State’s only other extra-base hit, a two-run double in the first.
Buckeye pitching had allowed only 11 home runs all season, but surrendered four to the ‘Ville. Tonight, Ohio State used five different pitchers. Andrew Armstrong got the midweek nod but pitched just 3.0 innings before giving way to Drew Rucinski in the fourth. Armstrong allowed four runs (two earned) on six hits and struck out four against no walks. Josh Edgin, Alex Wimmers and Eric Best followed. Louisville used six different pitchers.
Ohio State dropped to 18-12 while Louisville, a 2007 College World Series participant, improved to 21-14.
I would have loved to have seen this game tonight at the Bill. I like this game on the schedule and would like to see more games scheduled with teams who can help the RPI.
This weekend, third-place Ohio State (7-4) is home this weekend for four games against second-place Purdue (9-3) and the winner will be trying to keep close to Michigan (11-1), which has lost just one conference game.