Ott great in first start, bullpen shuts it down in 2-1 win over Northwestern

Behind Logan Ott’s solid outing in his first career collegiate start and pitching win, Maryland beat Northwestern 2-1 Saturday from Duane Banks Field.

In the first inning, Ott got his collegiate pitching career off to a great start recording his first collegiate strikeout on the first batter he faced in Anthony Calarco. Later in the inning, Ott would get another strikeout against Stephen Hrustich to record a scoreless first.

In the second inning, Ott’s debut hit a bumpy road allowing a single and a RBI double to Ethan O’ Donnell that gave Northwestern an early 1-0. But instead of being rattled in his start Ott would settle in and get some run support.

In the third inning, Maryland would put together a two-out rally against Northwestern starter Mike Doherty. Chris Alleyne drew a walk, a Matthew Shaw single would bring the red hot Benjamin Cowles up to the plate. He delivered a RBI single to left field to tie the game at 1-1. It appeared it would stay tied when a Maxwell Costes grounder to third base could have ended the inning — but Evan Minarovic booted the ball, allowing Costes to reach and Shaw to score as Maryland took the lead back for good.

Ott now with a lead return to the mound in the bottom of the third, pitching a quick 1-2-3 inning. In the fourth inning Ott gave up a leadoff single to Michael Trautwein but retired the next three batters with no stress. In the fifth inning Ott would give up a double with one out to Minarovic but retired the next two batters to strand the tying run at second base.

In the sixth inning, Maryland had its best chance to give Ott and the pitching staff some more run support, loading the bases in an unorthodox way. Costes reached on an error, Tucker Flint was intentionally walked and Matt Orlando drew a walk. However, with two outs, Justin Vought struck out to end the threat and the inning.

Ott would come out for the sixth inning and emptied the tank by getting Hrustich to fly out and striking out both Trautwein and David Dunn swinging to cap off his stellar debut.

Ott’s night was over as he finished with six innings, one earned run, and five strikeouts on 77 pitches. Most importantly, Ott put his team in a great position to win the game.

With the bullpen taking over in the seventh inning needing to get the remaining nine outs, Sean Heine was up first, pitching a stress-free 1-2-3 inning.

In the top of the eighth inning, Maryland again had a chance to add onto its lead when Luke Shliger was hit by a pitch, stole second and third base with one out to put himself in position to score. But Tommy Gardiner struck out and Flint grounded out to second base to end the threat.

Tyler Blohm was the next man out the bullpen and retired the first batter he faced but gave up a single and a walk and was pulled from the game. David Falco was summoned out of the bullpen to play the fireman role and keep Maryland’s lead with runners on second and third. Falco got Hrustich to fly out for the second out the inning, but a passed ball moved the runners up to second and third. A walk of Trautwein loaded the bases, and with the game on the line, Falco got Dunn to strike out and put out the fire.

In the top of the ninth, Maryland had runners on second and third with two outs with Cowles at the plate, but he struck out looking to end the threat. Maryland finished the game going 1-14 with runners in scoring position, but it wouldn’t matter behind the outing from the pitching staff with Falco finishing the game off in the bottom of the inning to secure a 2-1 win and the second win on the day.