Buckeyes Rally to Top Hawkeyes in First Round
May 9, 2013
LINCOLN, Neb. -- The University of Iowa softball team dropped an 8-4 decision to Ohio State on Thursday in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament at Bowlin Stadium. The Hawkeyes held a 4-1 advantage moving to the bottom of the fifth before the Buckeyes plated six runs to take their first lead of the game.
The Hawkeyes -- winners of five-straight games entering the tournament -- opened the second tournament contest of the day with a bang off the bat of Kayla Massey. The junior starting pitcher laced a two-run double down in the right field corner with the bases loaded to give the designated visitors an early 2-0 lead.
Ohio State cut the lead to one in the bottom of the second, utilizing two singles and a Hawkeye error to trim the Iowa advantage to 2-1.
Iowa's three-run lead turned into a three-run deficit in the bottom of the fifth. After retiring nine-straight batters, Massey allowed six runs on three hits and three walks. With one away, the Buckeyes used two-straight base hits in front of three-consecutive walks and a grand slam to take their first lead of the game at 7-4.
Ohio State (34-21) pushed across a single tally in the bottom of the sixth, making the final score 8-4.
Melanie Nichols earned the win for the Buckeyes in relief, moving to 6-2. She tossed three scoreless innings.
Massey took the loss for Iowa, surrendering eight runs (six earned) on six hits in five innings. Chelsea Lyon saw action in relief, allowing zero runs in an inning of work.
The Buckeyes advance to face top-seeded Michigan in the second round on Friday. Iowa, ranked 33rd in the latest NCAA Division I Softball RPI, will await the NCAA Selection Show on Sunday night (9 p.m. CT, ESPNU) to see if selected for the 64-team NCAA Tournament.