Ohio and Western Michigan split doubleheader< < Back to
ATHENS, Ohio (WOUB) — Early thunderstorms gave way to an avalanche of runs in both games on Friday at Bob Wren Stadium. The Bobcats clinched a spot in the MAC tournament because of Miami’s loss to Ball State Thursday night and appeared to have a little bit of a hangover from it in game one.
Western Michigan came out and grabbed an early lead in the second inning when Jimmy Allen doubled to left center, driving in two runs.
The Broncos added another five runs when they had all nine batters hit in the fifth inning. Dylan Nevar had an RBI double, while Ryan Missal hit a two RBI single during the fifth inning.
Western Michigan added three more runs in the seventh inning, however the Broncos hitting was not the story of game one. Western pitcher Easton Sikorski pitched the game of his life, coming within one strike of pitching a perfect game.
Sikorski’s perfecto however was ruined by a Colin Kasperbauer single up the middle. Kasperbauer would come around and score the Bobcats only run of game one on a Spencer Harbert RBI double. Despite this, the Bobcats fell in game one to the Broncos 10-1.
Senior Will Sturek spoke about the struggles of game one and what changed in game two.
“We clinched yesterday, and we came out a bit slow in the first game,” Sturek said. “Coach Moore came out (after game one) saying you are playing satisfied right now and we can’t be satisfied because we need to bring momentum into the tournament. That message really stuck with us.”
Coach Moore’s message definitely spoke to Sturek, who went three for three in game two with three home runs, the first of his Bobcat career. Sturek was all smiles talking about it after the game.
“It was awesome,” Sturek said. “I had been waiting a long time for it, I had some pretty good swings they just had not left the park yet. I knew the first one was gone and kind of blacked out around the bases. It felt really good.”
Despite Sturek’s home runs, and another home run by Nick Dolan, his third of the weekend, game two was a dogfight. Ohio jumped ahead in the fourth inning with the first of Sturek’s home runs, a three run round-tripper.
However, Western Michigan rallied back in the very next half inning loading the bases and chasing the Bobcats’ starter Hudson Boncal out of the game. The Broncos scored four runs, although only one was earned, and the Bobcats lead was cut to one run.
Despite this the Bobcats regained momentum in the bottom of the fifth with a Colin Kasperbauer sacrifice fly driving in Cael Baker, and the Bobcats never looked back. Insurance was added in the sixth with home runs by Sturek and Dolan as the Bobcats took the second game 12-7.
The Bobcats will try to take the series and get a victory on senior day on Saturday. First pitch is scheduled for one at Bob Wren Stadium.