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Rutgers softball opens up Big Ten, home play with series win against Ohio State

Fifth-year pitcher Mattie Boyd threw 13.1 innings for the Rutgers softball team this weekend against Ohio State. – Photo by Evan Leong

The Rutgers softball team won its first conference series of the season this weekend against Ohio State. The Scarlet Knights (20-13, 2-1) opened their home schedule and Big Ten schedule with a three-game series against the Buckeyes (17-10, 1-2), starting with a doubleheader on Friday.

Game one

Graduate student catcher Katie Wingert got things started in the bottom of the second for Rutgers with a double. Senior outfielder Kayla Bock brought Wingert home with a single to put the Knights up 1-0.

Graduate student infielder Payton Lincavage struck next, crushing a two-run homer in the third to extend Rutgers' lead to 3-0.

Senior pitcher and outfielder Morgan Smith had a great outing in game one of Friday's doubleheader. Smith started in the circle, throwing 6.1 innings, giving up just five hits and one run to Ohio State. She also had a solid day at the plate, hitting a run-scoring triple in the fifth inning.

Lincavage continued with her hot bat, crushing a solo home run to left field and extending the lead to 6-0.

The Buckeyes found themselves in a good spot in their final chance at the plate. A bases-loaded single from Destinee Noury brought in their first run of the day.

Fifth-year pitcher Mattie Boyd came in to pitch the final two outs for the Knights, securing their 6-1 win.

Game two

Rutgers took on Ohio State for a second game on Friday and got off to a quick start.

A sacrifice fly by junior infielder Maddie Lawson got the Knights on the board. Senior shortstop Kyleigh Sand followed with a run-scoring single, putting her team up 2-0.

Rutgers continued the trend, having a four-run third inning with Lawson picking up a three-run double.

The Buckeyes responded with a three-run inning of their own in the fourth, making the score 6-3.

The two continued to go tit for tat, with Ohio State taking its first lead in the sixth, thanks to a three-run homer from Noury.

Smith responded with a home run of her own in the bottom of the sixth, tying the game 8-8.

The game was then paused due to darkness and continued on Sunday.

The game stretched into 10 innings, with the Buckeyes scoring three against the Knights. Smith hit a homer in the final frame, but Rutgers could not snag the win, falling 11-9 to Ohio State.

Game three

The finale of the Knights' first Big Ten series came following the continuation of game two. Ohio State got on the board first, scoring on a sacrifice fly to take an early 1-0 lead.

The lead did not last long, though, with Wingert sending the ball over the fence and tying the game at 1-1.

Rutgers had a huge third inning, scoring a monstrous six runs and ending the inning up 7-1.

The Buckeyes had a four-run fourth inning, closing the gap between them and the Knights.

Ohio State added another run with a solo shot from Hannah Church, but Rutgers added an insurance run in the bottom of the inning, taking the 8-6 win.

The Knights will be back in action next weekend, traveling to West Lafayette, Indiana, to take on Purdue. The two have a three-game slate set to be broadcast on Big Ten Plus.

For more updates on the Rutgers softball team, follow @TargumSports on X.

To view more of Allison Girardi's work, follow @allisongirardii on X.

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