Ohio Baseball: Strong Pitching Leads Ohio to Series Sweep over Milwaukee< < Back to
ATHENS, Ohio (WOUB) — Entering the weekend, it was almost two years since Ohio picked up a series sweep. The last time the Bobcats swept a series was April 19-21, 2019, at Eastern Michigan, which was a three-game sweep. After a blowout win on Friday and two wins in the doubleheader on Saturday, the Bobcats were just one win away on Sunday from breaking out the brooms and sweeping the Panthers out of Athens.
After scoring two runs in the third inning and plating another in the fourth, it was all about the pitching from then on.
Chace Harris, Braxton Kelly, Eamon Horwedel and Edward Kutt IV combined for a solid day on the mound for Ohio (6-3) in a 3-2 victory over Milwaukee (0-7).
“That’s what we’re going to be about this year,” Ohio interim head coach Craig Moore said. “We’re going to be a team that’s going to pitch it, defend it and then we’re going to have to get timely hitting.”
Ohio got those timely hits and runs with two outs.
In the third with two down, Michael Richardson doubled home Isaiah Peterson to deadlock the game at one. Then, it was Harry Witwer-Dukes singling home Richardson to give the Bobcats their first lead of the day later in the inning.
Chace Harris got the start for Ohio. After salvaging just one run in three innings of work, Braxton Kelly entered the game in relief and thrived in his first outing of the season.
“I was so happy for Braxton to come out and just throw strikes and get outs,” Moore said.
Kelly was lights out in his first three innings of work. In the seventh with Ohio leading by two runs, Kelly found himself in a jam though as Milwaukee had runners on second and third with just one out.
Thanks to some defensive help from Trevor Hafner at third base, Kelly escaped the jam and maintained the two-run lead for the Bobcats.
“The most important thing is knowing that I have to make a pitch in that situation,” Kelly said. “I was telling myself that actually, just ‘Make a pitch, make a pitch,’ and I think that really helps me when I do get runners in scoring position and I do focus on just making that pitch that I have to execute.”
The Panthers eventually chalked up another run as Mike Ferri scored on a base hit by Jack Kraus off Eamon Horwedel. Horwedel later picked off the Milwaukee pinch runner then struck out a batter, keeping the Bobcats ahead.
With “Pump It Up” by Endor blasting on the speakers at Bob Wren Stadium and the Ohio bench and bullpen energetically dancing along, Edward Kutt IV took the mound in the ninth.
“I hope we have many, many more opportunities this spring to be in that situation,” Moore said.
“We’ve actually cranked it up lately with the energy,” Kelly said. “Down in the bullpen, those guys are electric. The energy’s good around the squad.”
After allowing a single, Kutt IV slammed the door on the Panthers to earn his second save of the season and gave the Bobcats their first sweep of the young season.
The Bobcats return to action on Tuesday at Morehead State. Ohio split a two-game doubleheader with Morehead on Feb. 26. First pitch on Tuesday is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Ohio then returns to Bob Wren Stadium on Friday to host Marshall.