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Ohio sweeps Bulls, anticipating series against rival Kent State


The wheels on the Ohio offense kept rolling through the hit parade during its doubleheader on Friday afternoon against Buffalo.

In the two Mid-American Conference games, Ohio (26-27, 12-8 MAC) scored a combined total of 19 runs on 19 hits, with nine other base runners reaching after being hit by pitches from the struggling Bulls pitching staff (14-29, 4-15).

Winning the first game 8-0 in six innings, because of a run-rule, the Bobcat offense was scorching. Leading the team was catcher Lauren Gellerman, who hit two of her three homeruns on the day in the first game. She is now tied with teammate Raven King for the single-season home run record (13).

“Me and (King) are really close, so it is a competition, but kind of a joke,” Gellerman said. “I hit a homer, she hit one and then I went back-to-back, so it’s definitely a friendly rivalry, but good for the team.”

Aside from the offense were a couple of milestones in game one. During her one-hit victory, pitcher Lauren McClary set the single-season strikeout record, which now sits at 192. Coach Jodi Hermanek also had a milestone performance winning her 200th career game in in the first contest of the day.

“Breaking the record really means a lot,” McClary said. “I’ve just been blessed this year pitching-wise and it has been amazing. I have tried to keep it off my mind, but it really feels great to have the record now.”

In the second game, the Bobcats continued to get runners on base and quickly bat them in. The team jumped out to a quick 3-0 advantage in the first inning with home runs from both King and Gellerman, and continued to score the rest of the day, holding a 9-1 lead at one point.

Ohio scored runs in each of the five innings in yet another run-rule victory of 11-3. With 10 different Bobcats reaching base in the game, the team always had an opportunity to expand their lead.

With great pitching, defense and offense, Ohio has the momentum in its favor in all aspects of the game, as only two games remain on the schedule.

“McClary’s record means a lot to me and really sticks out, but seeing the whole team do well with everything today is great,” Hermanek said. “We really need to keep the momentum in our favor moving forward, because we have been playing great.”

Ohio will begin its final series of the regular season on Saturday when Kent State comes to town. The two rivals will be playing for seeding in the MAC Tournament next week.

“Normally in most sports the biggest rival is Miami for the Battle of the Bricks, but for us it’s Kent State and we can’t wait to play them. It will be a dog fight,” Hermanek said.

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