In their last series of the season, the Northwestern Wildcats (14-21 B1G) faced off against the Ohio State Buckeyes (22-20 B1G) in Columbus. While the ’Cats tried their best to win their final series of the season, the team came up just short, losing the first two games and just clinching the final game.
In their efforts, the ’Cats were led by junior center fielder David Dunn, who whacked three hits and four runs in, scoring two runs in the process, as well as junior shortstop Shawn Goosenberg, who scored five runs, whacked five hits and a home run. First-year second baseman Tony Livermore also shined, with four hits, two runs batted in and two runs scored, and a home run.
Ohio State was led by a herculean effort by junior shortstop Zach Dezenzo, who whacked in seven runs and six hits, including three home runs, while scoring six runs himself. In addition, senior second baseman Colton Bauer notched five hits with three runs batted in, scoring two runs as well.
In the first of the three-game series, the ’Cats came up short by a score of 13-10.
Northwestern came out blazing hot, scoring five runs in the first inning, led by a powerful three-run home run by Dunn. Goosenberg and graduate left fielder Leo Kaplan also scored in the first to put Northwestern up 5-0.
Ohio State went on a run of their own in the third inning, however, putting up four runs to tighten Northwestern’s lead to one run.
In the top of the fourth, Northwestern responded with two more runs to take a 7-4 lead. Goosenberg scored again off a double from junior catcher Michael Trautwein, and sophomore designated hitter Stephen Hrustich scored off a walk. The Buckeyes came right back, as Dezenzo blasted a three-run home run to even the game at 7 in the fourth.
Ohio State then scored six runs in the next three innings to go up 13-7, including another three-run shot from Dezenzo.
In the top of the eighth, Northwestern scored three runs, but it wasn't enough. The final score was 13-10.
In the second game of the series on Saturday, Northwestern dropped the game – and subsequently, the series – to the Buckeyes 4-1.
Ohio State put up their first run in the first inning off a hit-by-pitch by graduate right-hander Hank Christie, bringing the Buckeyes’ sophomore right fielder Mitchell Okuley home. Dezenzo, riding his hot streak, then hit a solo home run in the third inning to go up 2-0.
Northwestern’s freshman right fielder Ethan O’Donnell responded with an RBI double to bring David Dunn home, but it was too little, too late. Ohio State would add two runs in the sixth off a key single by Bauer. By the game's end, Northwestern had batted .194 (6-31).
In the third and final game of the series and season, Northwestern crushed Ohio State 8-2. Junior pitcher Tyler Uberstine picked up his third win of the season to go an even 3-3 on the year. Goosenberg smashed a homerun in the top of the first to put Northwestern up 1-0, bringing his season total to 14.
Ohio State then scored off an RBI single to tie the score at one, but that was all they could muster. The ’Cats then scored six runs in second, third, and sixth innings combined to take a commanding 7-1 lead after the sixth inning, and would win the game 8-2 after scoring one more run in the ninth.
With that win, Northwestern finished the season with a 14-21 record. Following the game, it was announced that head coach Spencer Allen will not return next season, and associate head coach Josh Reynolds has been named the interim head coach.
After six years at the helm of Northwestern baseball, head coach Spencer Allen has decided he will not return next season.— Northwestern Athletics (@NU_Sports) May 31, 2021
On behalf of Northwestern Athletics, thank you, @CoachAllen_37 💜💜💜 pic.twitter.com/W1lPCGN61E
Onto next season.