Published Thu, Feb 14, 2013 2:42 pm Dateline
Coming off a four-game win streak, including an 8-0 victory in five innings against Rider, Ohio travels to Las Vegas this weekend to take on its toughest opponents on paper.
A 4-1 Bobcat squad, whose only loss came against Towson, will play No. 9 Oregon and No. 18 UCLA on the same day this weekend, as well as three other contests, in the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic.
Playing two ranked opponents within hours of each other has players fired up for a weekend in the desert; What happens in Vegas, Stays in Vegas could not hold truer for the Bobcats this weekend.
“I can’t explain how excited we are,” said Biz Eyrise, a senior utility player for the Bobcats. “It’s like we’re all on our toes and we’re ready to keep being a force to be reckoned with.”
Spending this past weekend in Greenville, N.C. at East Carolina University, Ohio lost an early battle to Towson, but followed up with a close 4-3 vicotyr against East Carolina. The Bobcats would only allow two more runs in their next three games, outscoring opponents 19-2 in that stretch. Confidence from the momentous run seems to be peaking at the right time for the Bobcats.
“We’re ready to go, said Tessa Bailey, a senior infielder. “We have a big weekend ahead of us, but we know that we’re ready to dominate with the bigger schools because we’re just as good as them.”
“There’s no better feeling than knowing our team is successful, and the success we got this weekend is exhilarating and we’re going to continue to feed off that and continue to kill it,” Eyrise said.
Oregon holds a 4-2 record, those losses coming from the No. 14 and No. 2 teams in the country. In their four wins, they have outscored opponents 32-3, a staggering margin against any caliber squad. Just moments after Ohio finishes play against Oregon, they will take the field against UCLA, a school that has won the NCAA Championship three times since 2003, its most recent triumph coming in 2010.
Seemingly not fazed from a crucial weekend series, Ohio will look to play these games like any other they compete in throughout the season.
“I know, that while growing up, I was taught that you want to play the best to be the best, so I think we’re just going to go out there and compete,” said Chelsea Hortman, senior outfielder for Ohio. “I don’t think any of us are any less of an athlete than they are.”
“A great quote that we’ve all kind of lived by is, ‘They’re just a formality,’” said Eyrise. “It doesn’t matter who we’re playing, at the end of the day, we’re just playing ourselves, and a game that we love. So, they have a big name, that’s cool, we look better in our uniforms.”