Gophers Top OSU, Advance to Title Game

May 10, 2014

Minnesota 9, Ohio State 0 (5)
Final Stats | Photo Gallery

  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R H E
 MINN 1 2 1 0 5 X X 9 5 2
 OSU 0 0 0 0 0 X X 0 1 1
 Pitching IP H R ER BB SO
 W - Moulton (25-6) 5.0 1 0 0 1 6
 L - O'Reilly (17-9) 2.0 3 4 4 1 0

 Batting Leaders AB R H RBI BB HR
 MINN - Walker 2 3 2 2 1 2
 OSU - Prantl 2 0 1 0 0 0

EVANSTON, Ill. – Four home runs, including two off the bat of junior shortstop Tyler Walker, helped lead the 15th-ranked and third-seeded Minnesota softball team to a 9-0, run-rule win in five inning over No. 7 seeded Ohio State in the Big Ten Tournament semifinal round Saturday at Sharon J. Drysdale Field in Evanston Ill. The Gophers will play either No. 1 seed Michigan or fourth-seeded Wisconsin in the championship tonight at 7:30.

Minnesota is in the conference title game for the second season in a row and at 40-9, has reached the 40-win plateau for the first time since 1999.

The Gophers, who entered the day with a 35-2 record when scoring first got right on the board quickly as Walker led off the game with her first home run of the day off Ohio State starter Olivia O’Reilly.

After starting pitcher Sara Moulton blanked the Buckeyes in the bottom of the frame, Friday grand slam hero Bree Blanchette blasted her second home run in as many plate appearances with Erica Meyer on base to make it a 3-0 game.

Leading off for the second time, Walker ended O’Reilly’s outing with her second home run of the day. The multi-home run effort was the second of the season for the San Jose, Calif. native, who also accomplished the feat April 26 against Penn State in a 9-0 victory.

Walker became the second Gopher to hit two home runs in a single Big Ten Tournament game. Shannon Beeler did it twice with the last time coming in 1998. It was the 26th

Following a scoreless fourth, Minnesota got back on the board in the fifth when Kaitlyn Richardson doubled home Walker to extend the Maroon and Gold’s lead to five. The Gophers added two more runs when sacrifice flies by Taylor LeMay and Hannah Granger. Meyer put the run rule in effect with her fifth long ball of the season, a two-run shot that brought Kelsey Klucas home to score.

Richardson’s two-base knock was her 18th of the season, tying her for third on the school’s single-season doubles list.

Moulton improved to 25-6 on the season with the one-hit win. It was her 12th shutout of the season and the program-record 47th shutout of the season. She also added to her school records with her 110th win and 1,1,62nd strikeout. She now has pitched 988.2 innings in her career.