Ohio split Friday’s doubleheader with Bowling Green, winning the first game 2-1 and losing the second 5-3. Unfortunately for Ohio, however, Friday was defined by its inability to generate runs.
The Bobcats recorded just ten hits between the two games and left a total of nine runners on base. They struggled to get runners aboard, and even when they did, they struggled to bring them home.
Some of Ohio’s struggles were likely due to the weather. It was cold, windy and rainy for the entirety of the doubleheader, but the majority of its issues were due to Bowling Green sophomore pitcher Payton Gottshall.
Gottshall flummoxed Ohio in both games. She threw a total of 10 and one-third innings and gave up just one earned run on six hits and struck out 11 across both games.
In the second game in particular when Gottshall entered, Ohio’s offense fell silent.
In the first three innings, Ohio scored three runs on four hits and stranded a pair of runners. Then, Gottshall entered to start the fourth and only four Ohio runners managed to get on base the rest of the game.
“Gottshall’s a good pitcher,” Ohio head coach Kenzie Roark said. “We were making sure that we capitalized on her mistakes and didn’t try to get outside of ourselves.”
For an Ohio team that averages more than four runs per game, scoring just five runs across both games of Friday’s doubleheader is undoubtedly a disappointing performance.
However, one major bright spot for Ohio was its base running. Ohio has been a good base running team all season, and Friday was one of its best days.The Bobcats stole seven total bases across the two games, and that doesn’t even include Annalia Paoli scoring on a delayed double steal in the second game.
Despite struggling on offense, Ohio was still able to put pressure on Bowling Green with their base running.
Unfortunately, that only makes Ohio’s inability to bring runs home more disappointing, as does the fact that Mackensie Kohl went almost pitch for pitch with Gottshall in both games. Both pitchers threw 10.1 innings and picked up one win and one loss. Gottshall allowed two runs while Kohl gave up three, and each outdueled the other in one of the two games.
Despite Kohl’s fantastic performance in the first game, Ohio once again had to win the game in the final at-bat, the second time it had done so in its first three home games.
Yasmine Logan stepped to the plate with runners on first and second and the chance to give Ohio’s its second walk-off win of the season. She drove the ball down the left field line, scoring Emily Walker and giving Ohio the perfect start to Friday’s doubleheader.
It looked as if Ohio would continue that strong performance after it got off to a hot start in the second game, but its offense faltered, something that has been far too common in Mid-American Conference play to this point.
The Bobcats will have to figure out some answers if they want to capture their first series win of the season Saturday.