The Ohio baseball team started the weekend with a rousing doubleheader sweep against the rival Miami Redhawks on Friday.
Miami returned the favor on Saturday.
By the time the dust settled on the weekend, it was a split of a four-game series between Miami and Ohio at Bob Wren Stadium.
Ohio won by scores of 3-1 and 1-0 on Friday. Miami won 11-5 and 6-1 in Saturday’s doubleheader.
It’s the fifth time in seven weekends that Ohio has split a four-game Mid-American Conference series.
The Bobcats are 24-17 overall, and 15-13 in the MAC. Miami’s record stands at 21-22 overall and 14-15 in the MAC.
Ohio ace Joe Rock continued his dominance over the MAC in Fridays opener. He struck out 12 batters in six innings of work, allowing only a run on a solo home run by Miami’s Benji Brokemond.
Rock allowed only four hits and one walk, improving to 8-1 on the season. He’s 6-0 in Friday MAC games, with one no-decision.
Brokemond’s home run came in the first inning, but Ohio tied the game in the second on Trevor Hafner’s solo home run
Ohio went ahead for good on Sebastian Fabik’s two-run home run in the third.
Brett Manis pitched the seventh for his sixth save of the season, striking out one batter.
Friday’s doubleheader sweep was all about pitching for Ohio, as Edward Kutt IV was nearly perfect in the second-game 1-0 win.
Kutt improved to 7-3 on the season with eight shutout innings, as he allowed only a single to Will Vogelgesang.
Kutt struck out 10 while walking only one batter.
Manis also pitched another scoreless inning for his seventh save, striking out one.
Bobcat pitching combined to strike out 24 batters in the 16 innings of Friday baseball.
Miami’s Grant Hartwig nearly matched Kutt on the mound. He took a shoutout into the bottom of the seventh before Hafner’s single scored Harry Witwer-Dukes for a 1-0 lead.
Hartwig (4-4) pitched all eight innings, striking out 11 and walking just one. He allowed four hits.
Miami’s offense came to life on Saturday, scoring three runs in the second, two in the third, four in the fourth and one in the fifth for a 10-0 lead.
Ohio scored five runs in the sixth, but could get no closer.
Brokemond was 3 for 4 with three runs and two RBIs for Miami, while Tyler Wardwell was 3 for 4 with two runs and two RBIs.
Braxton Kelly (1-3) took the loss for the Bobcats, pitching four innings. He gave up nine runs — eight earned — on 10 hits and a walk. He stuck out five.
Sam Bachman (3-2) got the win for Miami with five innings of shutout baseball. He gave up only one hit and one walk, striking out nine.
Joe Weisenseel and Michael Richardson each had two hits for Ohio, with Hafner and Mason Minzey each picking up two RBIs.
Miami salvaged the split with a 6-1 in Saturday’s finale.
Ohio scored in the bottom of the first when Hafner’s double to center scored Fabik.
Miami played long ball in the fourth, going ahead 2-1 on Brian Zapp’s two-run home run.
Cole Andrews put Miami up 6-1 with a three-run home run in the top of the ninth, putting the game out of reach.
Chace Harris (2-2) took the loss for Ohio, pitching five innings. He gave up just two runs on seven hits and a walk, striking out seven.
Kenton Egbert got the win in relief for Miami, pitching 3 1-3 innings without allowing a run. He struck out four, while walking one and giving up one hit.
Jacob Webb got his second save of the season with 1 2-3 innings of shutout baseball. He struck out three.
The Bobcats continue the MAC season this weekend with a four-game series at Akron. The first game on Friday is scheduled for 3 p.m. with a Saturday doubleheader starting at 12 p.m.
Sunday’s finale is also scheduled for 12 p.m.
The Zips are 5-26 in the MAC.