Rudy Rott makes a catch a first base for Ohio on Tuesday, April 2, 2019 at Bob Wren Stadium. The Bobcats beat the Morehead State Eagles 12-3.

Ohio Baseball: Bobcats survive with 1-0 victory over Kent State

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ATHENS, Ohio – With a 1-0 lead in the eighth inning, Kent State had runners on first and second with one out. Ohio head coach Rob Smith visited the mound and held a meeting with starter Kenny Ogg, who had only allowed five hits, and the rest of the infielders.

Kian O’Brien, the next Kent State batter, drilled a ball to deep left that was caught on the warning track. With two outs, Pavin Parks crushed a ball just foul down the right field line. The Kent State dugout believed the ball was fair and a homerun.

Later in the at-bat, Parks struck out swinging. Kenny Ogg was fired up. Jeff Duncan, Kent State’s head coach, was ejected between innings.

In the ninth, with Ohio still leading 1-0, Brett Manis relieved Ogg and gave up a leadoff single to Collin Mathews. Mathews attempted to steal second base on a two-strike count to Alex Ronnebaum. Ronnebaum struck out and Mathews was thrown out by catcher Tanner Piechnick on a very close call. Derek Simmons, Kent State’s assistant coach, was ejected from the game.

Ohio (15-26, 9-9 MAC) salvaged game three of the series Sunday with a 1-0 win over Kent State (21-20, 9-7 MAC), ending the Golden Flashes’ six-game streak of scoring ten or more runs.

“(Kent State) laid it to us pretty good in the first two games,” Rob Smith said. “We made some adjustments and Kenny (Ogg) did an unbelievable job executing out there today. I can’t say enough about the performance he gave us.”

Ogg (3-6) pitched eight innings and did not allow a run on five hits while striking out five batters.

“It felt good,” Ogg said of his performance. ”They’ve been having success swinging the bat and we definitely needed some zeros. In the first few innings, getting some momentum and getting a few zeros was huge for the rest of the game.”

Neither team had much offense. The Bobcats and Golden Flashes combined for 10 hits, which were all singles.

Ohio’s only run came in the first inning when Treyben Funderburg singled home Aaron Levy. Funderburg accounted for two of Ohio’s four hits. Rudy Rott and Sebastian Fabik each had a hit.

Michael Turner was 3-for-3 with three singles. Mathews was 2-for-4 and Parks was 1-for-4.

Zach Schultz, Kent State’s starter, only lasted 4 2/3 innings and only allowed one run on three hits. Schultz struck out five batters and allowed two walks.

Ohio will host rival Miami (OH), one of the top teams in the MAC, next weekend at Bob Wren Stadium.

“We knew this is going to be the toughest stretch,” Smith said. “Kent, and then Miami and Ball State, so I think our biggest goal is to be able to get ourselves in a position to where if we win a series at (Western Michigan), we’re in (the MAC Tournament). I think that’s the goal. I think to do anything more than that would be outstanding.”