Ohio Falls to No. 18 UCLA in Tournament Finale

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After winning two consecutive games by at least eight runs, the Ohio University softball team was on the wrong side of a lopsided game on Sunday.  The ‘Cats fell 11-2 in six innings in their final game of the Easton Desert Classic in Las Vegas, Nev.

UCLA’s bats struck early and often against Ohio starting pitcher Kaylin Clarke, pounding the sophomore for five hits — two of which were home runs — and seven runs in just 1.1 innings. 

Amid the Bruins’ scoring spree, Clarke was relieved by freshman Savannah Jo Dorsey, but the Bobcats were unable to mount any sort of comeback.  UCLA’s pitching combination of Paige McDuffee and Ally Carda stifled Ohio’s offense, not allowing a hit in the final five innings.

Early in the contest, the Bobcats looked as though they might be able to keep up with the Bruins’ bats. 

After Clarke allowed a two-run homer in the top of the first, Ohio responded when Lauren Gellerman’s two-out single led to a Bobcat big fly.  Caitlin Colvin went deep for her third home run in two games on Sunday and tied the game, 2-2.

However, McDuffee sat down the last 13 batters she faced, and UCLA’s pitchers combined to keep the Bobcats off the base paths until Alexa Cortez drew a walk in the sixth.

The loss was the Bobcats’ first of the Easton Desert Classic. Ohio finished the tournament with a 3-1 record and improved to 7-2 overall.

The Bobcats will look to continue building on their winning record in their next tournament.  Ohio travels to the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga for the Frost Classic, Feb. 22-24.