CANTON, Ohio – Senior Justin Childers (Pickerington, Ohio) homered and junior Mitchell Bault (Maineville, Ohio) limited host Malone to one run in 6.0 innings as Ohio Dominican's baseball team scored a 9-4 victory Saturday at Thurman Munson Stadium.
The Panthers, ranked No. 15 in the nation, took two of three games in a clash between two of the top teams in the G-MAC standings. ODU, which improved to 24-7 (13-3 G-MAC), remained in first place in the North Division and in the overall conference standings, while Malone fell to 23-12 (12-6 G-MAC).
Trailing 1-0 heading to the second inning, junior Chris Sackett (Loveland, Ohio) singled and junior Jace Komminsk (Westerville, Ohio) doubled to start the frame. An RBI grounder by senior Max Banke (Oakwood, Ohio) scored Sackett and a sacrifice fly from senior Cody Paterniti (Chardon, Ohio) brought in Komminsk to put the Panthers in front.
In the third inning, sophomore Bernee Sanchez (Grove City, Ohio) had a leadoff double, and Childers followed with a two-run shot to left, his seventh of the season, to bump the lead to 4-1.
The score remained that way until the seventh, when both teams put up three runs. Sanchez started the Panther half of the inning with a bunt single, Childers walked, and junior Colin Kaucher (Toledo, Ohio) hit a 3-0 pitch into right-center for an RBI single. A wild pitch then scored Childers, and Kaucher came in on Sackett's RBI single to center to make it 7-1.
A two-out error in the bottom of the inning set up Malone's three-run inning, but the Panthers struck back in the eighth. Childers worked back from an 0-2 count to run it full, then hit an RBI single back up the middle to score junior Brad Hull (Gahanna, Ohio) and make it 8-4.
ODU tacked on another run in the ninth with Banke's RBI single to left.
Bault settled in after a pair of long innings to start the contest and wound up yielding six hits while striking out six. He threw 73 of his 116 pitches for strikes and only allowed two hits in his final 4.0 innings of work.
The Panthers finished with 13 hits in the game, led by a 3-for-4 effort from Komminsk. Childers went 2-for-4 with two runs, three RBIs and a walk, and Sackett and Sanchez each went 2-for-4.
Ohio Dominican is scheduled to host Indianapolis in a doubleheader at 2 p.m. Monday in Panther Valley.
Contact: Scott Miles