Courtesy OhioBobcatTV

Bobcat Softball big Win Over Dayton

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With Dayton runners on first and third and two outs in the top of the fourth, Ohio coach Jodi Hermanek called her team into the pitching circle and brought Lauren McClary in to pitch for Sydney Compston after Compston had given up two runs.

McClary quickly cleaned things up, getting the batter to swing for strike three and recording four straight strikeouts after that to seal the Bobcats’ 8-2 win over Dayton on Tuesday.

“It felt really good,” McClary said on her performance. “It’s something that we needed for our team so I just wanted to come in and do a job for them and get a win.”

She certainly did that job, with her five strikeouts being more than any pitcher recorded that day. It also helped that Ohio (12-22, 5-4 in Mid-American Conference) started the game off with two great innings that saw it go ahead 6-0 early.

The first runs came off of Madison Claytor’s double to left field that scored Raven King and Casie Hutchinson.

Hutchinson repaid the favor in the second with a bases-loaded double that cleared the bases and set up King for a RBI single to left that scored Hutchinson.

But the Flyers (28-12) didn’t go out without putting a scare into Ohio in the fourth.

That scare came in the form of an Ohio error that saw Dayton’s Hannah Desalvo’s single legged into a double and the proceeding single putting runners on the corners. Kailee Budicin was up next and she didn’t disappoint, hitting a double to deep left field to bring home what would be the Flyers only runs of the game.

After that, Hermanek decided to install McClary in the circle and saw her decision pay off immediately as the Bobcats dominated for the rest of the game.

“You always want to be the best team in the state,” Hermanek said on the win. “You don’t want to be two, and that’s what we talk about when we play midweek games like this. Be the best ones on the field definitely, but be the best in the state.”

Her team seemed to take this to heart and recovered well after it let a 6-3 lead turn into a 9-6 loss against Kent State on Sunday. McClary was adament that just because this game wasn’t a conference game, it still meant a lot to get a big win against a good team.

“It means a lot because we play them every year,” McClary said. “Every win matters, even though it’s not a conference game it matters.”

“These are just wins that we need and we can get.”

With a doubleheader against Bowling Green on Friday and a two-game series against Toledo on Saturday and Sunday, Hermanek stressed that this weekend could be critical for the Bobcats.

“We have to be great for four games solid and this is a huge weekend for us,” she said. “Facing teams that are right with us in the conference. So we gotta battle, we gotta fight and we gotta make sure we’re grinding out every single pitch. You know, I just want us to start the week that way, so we can be comfortable with that mindset all week long and not let up.”