The Ohio State Buckeyes won five straight elimination games—including four in two days—to become the 2016 Big Ten Tournament Champion. It’s the first time since 2007 that Ohio State has won the tournament.
The day began with (4) Ohio State taking on (7) Michigan State in an elimination game to decide who would face (8) Iowa in the final. The Buckeyes forced the second game with the Spartans by defeating Michigan State the previous day 3-2 in extra innings.
Sunday morning, the Buckeyes jumped out to an early 3-0 lead, but the Spartans bounced back, scoring three runs of their own in the bottom of the third. Ohio State’s bullpen, powered by Seth Kinker—who set the tournament record with five appearances—who finished the game with 3.2 IP of scoreless relief after the Buckeyes plated four runs between the 6th and 7th innings.
The Buckeyes advanced to face (8) Iowa in the Big Ten Tournament Final. In the early goings, it was the Hawkeyes with the edge, plating four runs against Adam Niemayer while Calvin Mathews held Ohio State scoreless. But, in the fourth inning, the Buckeye bats came to life, scoring five runs on five hits to take a 5-3 lead. Ohio State tacked on two more runs in the seventh, but Iowa responded. Just days removed from coming from behind to defeat Ohio State 5-4 in extra innings, it looked like the Hawkeyes found the magic again—scoring three runs in the bottom of the eighth to tie the game at 7. However, it was the Ohio State offense—which say six batters record multi-hit games—that prevailed. Senior Troy Kuhn drove in tournament MOP Ronnie Dawson in the bottom of the eighth to take an 8-7 lead that Yianni Pavlopoulous would hold, clinching the title for Ohio State.
The Buckeyes earn the automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament to reach a NCAA Regional berth for the first time since 2009. The All-Tournament Team was comprised of exclusively Buckeyes and Hawkeyes, save for Terps RHPs Mike Shawaryn and Brian Shaffer. Shawaryn tossed a complete game against Indiana, striking out a TD Ameritrade Park record and career-high 16 batters, and Shaffer dominated the Hoosiers just days later, allowing just two hits in a complete game shutout. Ronnie Dawson was named the Big Ten Tournament Most Outstanding Player after going 15-26 with eight runs scored, six RBI, six doubles, one home run and four stolen bases. The 15 hits is a tournament record.
P – Nick Gallagher, Iowa
P – Brian Shaffer, Maryland
P – Mike Shawaryn, Maryland
C – Jalen Washington, Ohio State
1B – Tyler Peyton, Iowa
2B – Troy Kuhn, Ohio State
3B – Mason McCoy, Iowa
SS – Craig Nennig, Ohio State
OF – Joel Booker, Iowa
OF – Ronnie Dawson, Ohio State
OF – Troy Montgomery, Ohio State
DH – Austin Guzzo, Iowa
The NCAA Tournament selection show will take place Monday at noon.