Bases loaded, two outs in bottom of the ninth is most baseball player’s dream batting scenario. That was the situation for Ohio’s Colin Kasperbauer in the second game against Morehead State on Friday.
Unfornately for Ohio and Kasperbauer, the Bobcats did not get the walkoff win they were hoping for. Morehead State would go on to beat Ohio 3-1 in 11 innings at Bob Wren Stadium.
Coming off a no-hitter performance by LHP Joe Rock, resulting 6-0 win in game one, the Bobcats had all the momentum they needed clip the Eagles. Morehead State (1-5), however, would not go down easily.
RHP Colin Sells got the start for the Bobcats (2-3) and immediately got to work earning his first strikeout of the night in the top of the first inning. Sells’s quick work gave Ohio the opportunity to break out the bats early.
For the Eagles, RHP Luke Helton was on the bump. Helton allowed one hit in the first, but a dropped third strike allowed Spencer Harbert to get on base as well. No Bobcats scored in the first, beginning a long, haunting trend of leaving runners in scoring position.
Morehead State got on the board first in the top of the fourth on a single to centerfield by Peyton Dillingham. Ohio quickly answered with a run of its own off of an RBI double to center by Austin Levy.
The score would remain 1-1 until the top of the 11.
Ohio replaced RHP Eamon Horwedel with RHP Chace Harris to start the inning and Trevor Lukkes entered in to left field, but these defensive changes were no match for the Eagles. Morehead State collected three hits and two walks in the inning, bringing the score to 3-1.
Lucky for the Bobcats, having the home field advantage gave them the opportunity to hit again in the bottom of the 11. Their focus: getting the lead-off man on base.
In that role, Isaiah Peterson started the inning with a single to left, but his efforts were without prevail. Ohio was able to collect two hits during the inning but left the runners stranded with a fly-out to end the game.
“We were not able to get the big hit with runners in scoring position like they did,” interim head coach Craig Moore said. “We had multiple, multiple opportunities to score runs, which is a big hit, and we just didn’t get that.”
Ohio left 16 runners on base, double of what the Eagles had. Getting the ball into play was no question for the Bobcats as they had 10 hits but getting across the plate was a struggle. Moore will look to change this situation through practice before Sunday’s doubleheader rematch.
“In practice, putting these guys in those situations during practice and really getting them to maybe refine their approach or their plan… and just kind of seeing what we need to do to get those opportunities to be more successful than not,” Moore said.
Ohio will have one day of practice before facing Morehead State in another doubleheader at Morehead State on Sunday.
“It’s gonna be a little bit of a challenging schedule playing doubleheaders every Saturday from here on out,“ Moore said. “So we’re trying our best to educate the guys to be healthy.”
The Bobcats are scheduled to play at 1 and 4 p.m. on Sunday.