COLUMBIA, S.C. – The Ohio softball team (6-3) wrapped up play at the 2019 Gamecock Invitational Sunday (Feb. 17), sweeping the day's competition. The Bobcats defeated Campbell (1-8), 4-3, in game one, and came back later in the afternoon to defeat Charlotte (3-4), 8-6, in the final game.
GAME ONE: Ohio 4, Campbell 3
Ohio forced a quick three-and-out to open the top of the first inning. With two outs in the bottom of the frame, senior Natalie Alvarez (Long Beach, Calif.) singled to center field and advanced to second after senior Morgan Geno (Chillicothe, Ohio) singled to left field to continue the early pressure on Campbell. Freshman Caroline Spacek (Beaumont, Texas) struck out swinging but reached first on a throwing error that advanced Geno to second and scored Alvarez giving the Bobcats a 1-0 lead. Ohio would ground out to end the frame with a 1-0 advantage over Campbell going into the second inning.
After Ohio forced two quick outs in the top of the second inning on a ground out to third base and a fly out to right field, Campbell singled to third base and advanced to second on a throwing error. Campbell capitalized with a double to right center for an RBI that tied the game at one apiece. Campbell struck out swinging to end the frame. Senior Alex Day (Hilliard, Ohio) led off the bottom of the second inning for the Bobcats with a single to center field later advancing to second on a ground out, however the Bobcats would be unable to get her around, sending the game to the third tied at 1-1
After a scoreless top of the third, freshman Charlee Pond (Redondo Beach, Calif.) singled to center field to begin the bottom of the third. Alvarez reached on a fielder's choice, but Pond would be out at second base. With one out, Geno doubled to right center advancing Alvarez to third base. Ohio would ground out for its second and third out of the frame stranding runners on second and third.
After a scoreless fourth inning, Ohio again sent Campbell down in order close the top of the fifth inning. The Bobcats would try to add on in the bottom of the inning as sophomore Katie Yun (North Canton, Ohio) singled to center field to begin the frame. Pond would then reach first on a fielder's choice, but Yun would out at second, unfortunately, the Bobcats once again would be unable to add on.
Campbell would take the lead in the top of the sixth inning on a two-run homerun, going up 3-1 going into the bottom of the frame. In the bottom of the sixth, Ohio would respond to the Campbell runs starting with Spacek who doubled to left field. With one out, Day singled to left field advancing Spacek to third. Senior Deanna Cole (Akron, Ohio) singled to right field for an RBI, advancing Day to second and scoring Spacek. Freshman Taytum Hargrave (Warsaw, Ind.) would go on to single to third base that advanced Cole to second and Day to third. A sacrifice fly to center field by Yun would score Day for an RBI that tied the game at 3-3 and also advanced Cole to third. The run ended as a ground out would end the frame with the game tied.
Campbell would threaten again in the top of the seventh with runners on first and second with no outs. Campbell flied out for its first out and second out of the frame. With two outs, Campbell would ground out and strand two runners to end the top of the seventh.
The Bobcats would strike once again in the bottom of the seventh. Alvarez singled through the left side and freshman Justice Ruggles (Grass Lake, Mich) would pinch run. Geno reached on a fielder's choice but Ruggles would be out at second. Geno advanced to second on a wild pitch and would then score the winning run on a double down the infield line by Spacek for the RBI and 4-3 victory.
Overall, Ohio scored four runs on 12 hits and registered one error, while Campbell scored three runs on six hits and registered one error.
Individually, Spacek went 2-for-4 with an RBI, two doubles and a scored a run, while Geno went 2-for-4 with a double and scored a run. Yun went 1-for-3 with an RBI while Day went 1-for-2 with an RBI and scored a run. Alvarez also scored a run and went 2-for-4 on the day.
In the circle, Sophomore Madi McCrady (Brimfield, Ohio) pitched seven innings, allowing three runs on six hits, striking out five and walking one.
GAME TWO: Ohio 8, Charlotte 6
Ohio would strike first in the top of the first inning. Yun would reach on an error and then move to third on a single from Alvarez. Yun would then score on a sacrifice fly from Geno, giving Ohio a 1-0 lead after one inning.
After a scoreless bottom of the frame for Charlotte, Ohio tried to add on in the top of the second. With two outs and Cole on first from a walk, Yun would double, however, Cole would be thrown out at third, ending the inning with Ohio still up 1-0.
Charlotte would get on the board in the bottom of the third inning on a one-out RBI single, tying the game at 1-1.
The Bobcats would get runners on in the top of the fourth inning when Cole and Day drew walks. However, the Bobcats would be unable to get a run across, keeping the game at 1-1. Charlotte would threaten in the bottom of the fourth, loading the bases with two outs. However, the Bobcats' defense would be able to get the final out, keeping the get at 1-1.
The Bobcats would add on in the top of the fifth inning. With one out, Pond reached first after she was hit by a pitch. She then moved to second on a single from Alvarez and would score after an RBI single from Geno. Ruggles would then enter the game to run for Alvarez and would then score after the Bobcats loaded the bases and sophomore Brooke Rice (Mason, Ohio) drew a walk. Cole would the draw her won bases loaded walk, giving Ohio a 4-1 lead.
After a scoreless from in the bottom of the fifth, Ohio would add on in the top of the sixth inning when Yun scored on an RBI triple down the right field line by Pond. Pond would then score on a bases loaded ground out by Spacek. Alvarez would then score on an RBI single from junior Alexa Holland (Rochester, Ind.). A single from Day would load the bases for the Bobcats, and with two outs, junior Kendall Meeks (Guysville, Ohio) would be hit by a pitch, scoring Geno, who walked earlier in the frame, and giving Ohio an 8-1 lead entering the bottom of the inning.
Charlotte would get a run back in the bottom of the sixth inning, cutting the Ohio lead to 8-2. After a scoreless top of the seventh by the Bobcats, Charlotte would attempt to rally in the bottom of the seventh, scoring four runs on three hits, however the Ohio defense would stand strong and take the game by the final of 8-6.
Overall, Ohio scored eight runs on 10 hits and had three errors, while Charlotte registered six runs on eight hits and had one error.
Alverez finished the day 3-for-4 with a run scored, while Pond went 2-for-3 with a triple, two runs scored and an RBI. Yun went 1-for-4 with a double and two runs scored, while Geno went 1-of-3 with two RBI and two runs scored. Spacek registered a hit and an RBI, as did Holland.
In the circle, freshman Mackensie Kohl (Corona Del Mar, Calif.) pitched six innings, allowing two runs on seven hits, walked five and struck out seven. Junior Desirae Villanueva (Surrey, British Columbia) finished the game, pitching one innings, allowing four runs on one hit, walked three and struck out one.
Up next, the Bobcats head to Chattanooga, Tennessee to participate in the Chattanooga Frost Classic. On Friday, February 22, Ohio takes on Southern Illinois at 11 a.m. followed by Eastern Kentucky at 4 p.m. Play continues on Saturday where the Bobcats are set to play host Chattanooga at 1:30 p.m. and then battle Evansville at 4 p.m. On Sunday, the Bobcats face off against Creighton at 10 a.m. to close out the Chattanooga Frost Classic.