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Penn State Softball Drops Both In Doubleheader At No. 22 Ohio State

Penn State softball (6-28, 2-9 Big Ten) was swept in its midweek doubleheader at No. 22 Ohio State.

The Buckeyes (26-8, 7-4 Big Ten) run-ruled the Nittany Lions in the opening game, 9-1 after six innings, before holding out in a back-and-forth 7-4 battle in game two.

How It Happened

Game One

Junior clean up hitter Emily Clark rocked a pitch from Penn State starter Madison Shaffer over the left field wall to give the Buckeyes a 2-0 lead in the first inning. The Nittany Lions answered in the top of the third with a two-out RBI from right fielder Kennedy Legg to cut the deficit in half.

That’s as close as Penn State would get the rest of the way in this one. Shaffer conceded five hits through five innings with her team trailing by three runs. The Buckeyes broke it wide open in the sixth — powering past the junior pitcher with three runs off three hits before Ashton Mensinger entered the circle in relief.

The damage was already done by this point and Mensinger conceded another hit before giving the Buckeyes the walk off on a wild pitch for a 9-1 mercy rule win after six innings.

Game Two

Back-to-back two-out doubles from Kennedy Legg and Delaney Elling helped the Nittany Lions open the game with a run in the first inning. The Buckeyes fired back at Penn State starting pitcher Jessica Cummings, who struggled against the strong offensive lineup, but gave up just two runs in the first two innings despite allowing seven runners on base.

Elling, who didn’t play in game one, knocked in two more runs with a bases-loaded single in her second at-bat during the third inning.

The Nittany Lions had the momentum and appeared to have gotten out of the fourth inning unscathed with a fly ball heading to left field for the final out, but Tori Dubois dropped it to allow a run and Ashley Goodwin hammered a two-run shot in the next at-fbat to give the Buckeyes a 5-3 lead.

Penn State had its chance to strike back in the fifth, but scored just a single run and left the bases loaded. The Nittany Lions wasted another opportunity in the sixth inning, leaving runners on the corners. The Buckeyes tacked on two runs in the top of the seventh before stranding Penn State with the bases loaded again in the bottom of the inning to close out the win, 7-4.

Player of the Series

Shelby McCombs | Pitcher | Senior

The Buckeyes were helped to their run-rule win in the opener thanks to their senior in the circle, who gave up just one run and four hits in six innings of work. McCombs came back in game two in relief to get the save in the win. She also was effective in the batter’s box — going 4-6 in the doubleheader and hammering a solo home run during game one.

What’s Next

Penn State has a three-game series at Nittany Lion Softball Park this weekend against Michigan State (14-20, 2-7 Big Ten). Friday’s game begins at 6 p.m. and Saturday’s begins at 3 p.m., with both of these outings airing on LionVision. The final game of the series is Sunday at 1 p.m. live on BTN Plus.

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About the Author

Steve Connelly

Unfortunately, former editor Steve Connelly has graduated. Where is he now? He might be doing something related to that PR degree he got in 2019. Maybe he finally opened that sports bar named after one of his photos, the Blurry Zamboni. Or he might just be eating chicken tenders and couch surfing. Anything’s possible. If you really want to know, follow him on Twitter @slc2o.

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