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Nebraska Baseball Preview: Ohio State

The Cornhuskers dropped Tuesday’s match-up against the Creighton Bluejays. They are now one for their last six games.

Jon Johnston

Nebraska vs Creighton Preview:

Date: April 1st-3rd

Time: April 1st (Fri.) @ 5:05 p.m April 2nd (Sat.) @ 2:05 p.m April 3rd (Sun.) @ 12:05 p.m

Location: Bill Davis Stadium, Columbus, Ohio

Record(s): Nebraska (9-14) Ohio State (8-13)

Head Coach(s): Will Bolt, Greg Beals

Stream: Big Ten+

Radio: Husker Sports Network

The Huskers dropped a frustrating game on Tuesday against the Creighton Bluejays in which the Jays had five total errors. Husker hitting was good for eight hits on the day, although they didn’t seem to quite come in situations where they needed them. The Huskers finished just 2-15 with runners in scoring position.

Cam Chick had another two hits in the game including a double. On a positive note the Senior captain really looks like he’s found life at the plate again lately. Ranking last in the conference and in the bottom half nationally in almost every offensive category, Will Bolt’s squad is still searching for answers as they take the trip up to Columbus to take on the struggling Buckeyes.

Weekend Match-ups:

Game 1: RHP Shay Schanaman (1-3) vs. LHP Isaiah Coupet (2-2)

Game 2: RHP Koty Frank (2-0) vs. RHP Nate Haberthier (0-2)

Game 3: RHP Dawson McCarville (2-3) vs. RHP Wyatt Loncar (1-2)

Ohio State Buckeyes

April 1st: 5:05 pm cst

April 2nd: 2:05 pm cst

April 3rd: 12:05 pm cst

The Ohio State Buckeyes have been nothing spectacular this year and are coming off of a rather rough stretch of baseball as of late. They are five for their last 18 games and in that stretch have been playing some of the worst defense in the country. To put things in perspective, Nebraska has struggled this year defensively and comes into this one with a .965 fielding percentage. The Buckeyes have committed 41 errors for a .947 fielding percentage. This is paired with a slightly below average offense and subpar starting pitching.

Offensively, the Buckeyes are led by Senior infielder Marcus Ernst. Ernst leads the team with a .429 batting average and 33 hits already. Behind him is Tyler Pettorini, with a .306 batting average. Zach Dezenzo leads the team in home runs with seven thus far and leads with RBI (21) as well. The lone speed threat on the base-paths comes in Freshman outfielder Trey Lipsey (8-9). Overall as a team, the Buckeyes rarely steal bags but are out-homering the Huskers 25-13. They are also outhitting Nebraska overall with a .266 batting average compared to the Huskers .242.

On the pitching end, the Buckeyes have some high ERA’s in their starters. This weekend's probable starters are Isaiah Coupet (5.40), Nate Haberthier (5.47), and Wyatt Lonecar (5.49). The staff as a whole has a 5.22 ERA compared to a 5.02 Huskers ERA. They are striking out hitters at a reasonable pace however as they have 207 as a team. Leading the pack is their game 1 starter Isaiah Coupet with 45. He has been a little bit more reliable than the numbers make it seem as he has been touched for four home runs this far but is holding opposing hitters to just a .206 average. Ethan Hammerberg has been solid out of the bullpen and leads the team in appearances (11) and ERA (1.40). He also has 28 strikeouts and a .159 batting average against. He has been one of the better relievers in the conference this year.

Verdict:

It's a tough pill to swallow for Nebraska fans but the Huskers are in a major offensive slump right now. On the other hand, the struggling Buckeyes may be the team to climb out of it against. With both teams struggling lately, it looks like whoever loses this series is in danger of falling apart pretty quickly now 23 games into the season. For the Huskers, they need to take this series going before things get out of hand. Nebraska has the starting pitching to make it competitive in Schanaman and Frank, but the overall numbers do favor Ohio State.

Verdict: Shay Schanaman and Koty Frank shove on the mound, leaving the Huskers 2-1 on the Weekend.