A rough first inning put the Nebraska baseball team (23-13, 5-5 Big Ten) in a 7-0 hole that they were never able to climb out of on Friday night at Bill Davis Stadium. The Ohio State Buckeyes went on to win the game 10-2, while the two squads played a close 3-2 game over the final eight innings.
Josh Scheffert was a bright spot for NU offensively on the night with a 2-for-4 performance; hitting one home run and driving in two. Kyle Kubat also threw well in relief, as the freshman put up three-shutout innings with three strikeouts.
Ohio State jumped out to a 7-0 lead in the first on just three hits to give starter Jaron Long, who threw his second complete game of the season, a big cushion on the mound. NU’s Tyler King struggled in his first career conference start, as he retired just one, walked three and hit two Buckeyes, before Tyler Niederklein came in and got the Huskers out of the frame.
The Huskers got one run back in the top of the second when Kash Kalkowski reached on a one out single and scored on a two-out single by Scheffert. NU put themselves in position to add more in the third with a pair of leadoff singles by Cory Burleson and Michael Pritchard, but Pritchard was picked off, Rich Sanguinetti struck out and Chad Christensen grounded out to end the threat.
Scheffert added the Huskers’ other run of the game with a leadoff homer in the seventh inning. It was the junior’s fifth home run of the year, tying his single-season career high, as he also hit five as a freshman in 2010.
The Huskers will look to even the series tomorrow with sophomore Brandon Pierce on the mound when the two teams meet for game two of the three-game series at 2:05 p.m. (CT).