Hoosiers Edged by OSU, 6-4
April 20, 2007
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Freshman Brian Lambert and senior Keith Haas had three hits each, but it was not enough for the Indiana baseball team, as it was bested by Ohio State 6-4 on Friday. IU falls to 14-19 (4-9 Big Ten) with the loss as Ohio State broke a four-game conference losing streak to move to 20-10 (5-6).
The Buckeyes got on the board first with an unearned run in the bottom of the third. After Cory Kovanda led off the inning with a single and advanced to second on a sacrifice, Tyler Tufts got Matt Angle to ground out to shortstop as Kovanda advanced to third. Eric Fryer walked to give OSU runners at the corners, and then J.B. Shuck hit a grounder to second base, but David Trager was unable to handle the grounder and Kovanda hustled home to make the score 1-0.
Indiana responded with a pair of runs in the top of the fifth with a pair of runs on four singles. With one out, Chris Hervey got things going with a single down the left-field line and Josh Phegley followed with a bloop single to right to move Hervey to third. Lambert rapped a single to right to plate Hervey and move Phegley up 90 feet, and Haas added a single through the left side to score the freshman catcher and make the score 2-1.
The lead was short-lived, though, as OSU earned a second unearned run in the bottom of the frame. Kovanda started things with a leadoff bunt single, Jacob Howell reached on a grounder to second that Trager could not handle. A sacrifice moved the runners to second and third, and Kovanda scored his second run of the game on a groundout by Fryer.
OSU regained the lead in the bottom of the sixth on a trio of well-placed singles. Tony Kennedy hit a one-out single through the right side, but the Hoosiers got Jason Zoeller to pop out to second for the inning's second out. The Buckeyes executed the hit and run with Kovanda at the plate, as he dribbled a single past Trager into right to move Kennedy to third. Howell then promptly drove a grounder through the right side to make the score 3-2 in favor of the home squad.
Indiana tied the game once more in the top of the seventh with a key two-out RBI by Andrew Means. Lambert got the inning started with a walk and moved to second on a Haas sacrifice. After Trager grounded to short, Means laced a single to center to drive Lambert home and make the score 3-3. The sophomore then stole second, but Jon Fixler popped out to end the inning.
The Buckeyes took a 5-3 lead in the bottom of the eighth on a two-out, two-run single by Eric Angle to score Tony Kennedy and Kovanda. Fryer followed with a double down the third-base line to plate Angle to chase Tufts from the game and make the lead three runs.
The Hoosiers threatened in the top of the ninth as the first three hitters reached base. Josh Phegley reached on an error by the second baseman and Lambert followed with his third hit of the night. After Haas singled to bring home Phegley, Jake Hale closed things out with a pair of strikeouts and a flyout.
Tufts allowed 11 hits and two walks in 7 2/3 innings of work, with four of the six runs he allowed being earned. The sophomore struck out two as he fell to 3-5 on the season. Joe Vicini came in to relieve Tufts and retired Shuck with a popout to third. J.B. Shuck collected the win to move to 5-0, as he pitched 8-plus innings and allowed eight hits and two walks, as three of the four runs he allowed were earned.
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