Dayton, OH

Softball: Offense powers 3rd-straight Ohio State win against Dayton

The Lantern
Ohio State softball defeated the University of Dayton in Dayton, Ohio, 17-6 on Wednesday. Credit: Zachary Rilley | Photo Editor

After Ohio State scored six runs in the top of the first, the Buckeyes seemed to be in cruise control, but Dayton did not go quietly.

The Flyers (15-12, 2-1 Atlantic 10) tied the game at six apiece after one inning; however, the Buckeyes (21-8, 2-1 Big Ten) scored 11 runs in the final three innings — including six in the fifth inning — to mercy rule the Flyers 17-6. It is the sixth time this season Ohio State won via mercy rule, and its 15th win in the last 16 games.

In just the first inning, the Buckeyes recorded four hits highlighted by sophomore outfielder Melina Wilkison’s two-run homer, her fourth of the season.

Nine Buckeyes recorded a hit, led by sophomore infielder Kami Kortokrax and senior designated player Sam Hackenbracht who each collected three.

Junior righty Emily Ruck started the game, but only finished one-third of an inning after allowing five runners to reach base and four earned runs, before  junior right-hander Allison Smith came in relief to finish the inning, but not before Dayton tied the game 6-6.

After the first inning, the runs quickly stopped for the Flyers. Of their seven hits in the game, five came in the first inning alone. Smith allowed only two runners in scoring position, and retired the Flyers in order in the third and fifth innings.

Two home runs in the top of the third drove in three runs, as the Buckeyes got some help in the top of the fourth.

Kortokrax scored her second of her three runs Wednesday on the Flyers’ second error of the game. Hackenbracht scored the second unearned run of the inning on junior infielder Destinee Noury’s sacrifice fly out — her 20th RBI of the season.

Ohio State mirrored the first inning in the fifth with four hits and six more runs. Freshman catcher Hannah Church contributed three of her career-high four RBIs with her first triple of the season.

Smith pitched 4 2/3 scoreless innings to earn her 11th win on the season and drop her season ERA to 2.09, collecting four more strikeouts to total 130 this year.

The Buckeyes will face Indiana this weekend starting Friday at 6 p.m., and all games will be streamed on BTN+.

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