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BGSU baseball vs Ohio preview: Falcons’ storybook season continues with homestand against Bobcats

Bowling+Green%2C+OH+-+The+Falcons+defeated+the+Penguins+12-9+at+Steller+Field+in+Bowling+Green%2C+Ohio
Drake Harlett
Bowling Green, OH – The Falcons defeated the Penguins 12-9 at Steller Field in Bowling Green, Ohio

BGSU baseball stays at Steller Field for the next three games in their nine-game homestand, hosting the Ohio Bobcats for a weekend filled with intrigue. 

The Falcons will attempt to continue two different winning streaks simultaneously, as they come into the weekend 8-0 at home and 15-0 in Mid-American Conference (MAC) play.  

As they look to add three more wins to each of these records, the Falcons will host game one on Friday with first pitch at 3 p.m., followed by games two and three at 1 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. 

Matchup History 

BGSU has faced the Bobcats 176 times dating back to 1952. Currently, OU leads the series 94-81-1.

In the three matchups against Ohio in 2023, Bowling Green prevailed in a 5-4 win in game one before losing the final two games in Athens. 

Considering only games hosted at Steller Field, BGSU has a 5-3 record against Ohio dating back to 2016, giving some optimism for the series ahead.  

Scouting Bowling Green 

The Falcons currently stand at 20-11 overall and 15-0 in MAC play, the longest conference win streak of any team in the nation and the longest in program history.  

If the Falcons win the first two games against Ohio, they will reach a record of 10-0 at home for the first time in program history.  

Besides standing in first place in the MAC standings, Bowling Green is at the top of the leaderboard in nearly every offensive category, sitting first in the MAC in runs batted in (RBIs), runs, slugging percentage and second in the conference in batting average and on base percentage.  

Much of the credit for the offensive success can be attributed to the depth of the Falcon roster, with nine of the 14 hitters who have started more than three games registering a batting average of .290 or above.  

The Falcons have scored a whopping 198 runs in only 15 games played in the MAC so far this season, giving them an impressive 13.2 runs per game in conference play. 

While the pitching staff hasn’t been the highlight of the team, they haven’t been a liability on the mound, pulling their own weight and letting the offense do the heavy lifting.  

As a team, the Falcons have a 7.16 earned run average (ERA) and a .306 opponent batting average (BAA), good for seventh in the MAC in both categories.  

Scouting Ohio 

OU has had a rough go in the 2024 season, sitting ninth in the MAC standings at 10-22 overall and 6-12 in conference play despite winning two of three games against Eastern Michigan last weekend.  

The team lost their most recent game against the Dayton Flyers on Wednesday by a score of 7-5. 

Ohio’s offensive production has been mediocre to this point within the context of the MAC, entering the weekend fifth in team batting average, eighth in RBIs and seventh in slugging percentage and on base percentage.  

The Bobcats haven’t been great with the glove, posting a .963 fielding percentage that puts them second-to-last in the conference.  

The pitching staff has earned a 7.91 ERA and a .310 BAA while allowing 245 earned runs and 355 hits, good for eighth best in the MAC in all four categories.  

Falcon Four Players to Watch 

Nathan Archer (Bowling Green #8) 

After a rough weekend against Central Michigan where he went 2-16 with four strikeouts, Archer came back to form against Youngstown State on Tuesday, registering a double and his 11th home run of the year along with a walk. 

The leadoff hitter leads the team with his 11 home runs and 47 hits and is one of four hitters on the team with an offense plus slugging (OPS) over one.  

Archer had a solid series in last year’s matchup with the Bobcats, going 3-3 in game two and 1-4 with an RBI in game three.   

Brady Birchmeier (Bowling Green #43) 

After hitting the walk-off single that secured the sweep of Central Michigan last weekend and going 1-2 with two walks, three RBIs and a double against Youngstown State, Birchmeier is coming into the series with confidence. 

The freshman has hits in four of his last five games and six RBIs in his last three games. 

Birchmeier hit the second home run of his career last Wednesday against Purdue Fort Wayne and will be looking for his third this weekend against Ohio.  

Gideon Antle (Ohio #18) 

The senior center fielder has been having a monster season at the plate for the Bobcats, sitting second in the MAC with a .412 batting average and third with 54 hits.  

Antle typically hits third in Ohio’s lineup, where he has been a pain for pitchers since the beginning of the season, smacking three or more hits in six games so far this season. 

This is Antle’s second year with the Bobcats after he transferred from Jefferson College in Hillsboro, Missouri after the 2022 season.  

Blake Gaskey (Ohio #21) 

The junior starting pitcher was outstanding in his last time out against Eastern Michigan last weekend, when he allowed only two earned runs and struck out five through 7.2 innings of work. 

Gaskey is the only Bobcat pitcher to have more than six starts on the year, as he has started all nine of the games he pitched in. 

The Iowa native has a 7.23 ERA on the year in 42.1 total innings and he has allowed 36 earned runs throughout the season, fifth most in the MAC.  

For more stories related to BGSU Athletics, follow Falcon Media Sports Network on X (@bg_fmsn).

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