Savannah Jo Dorsey earned an Ohio-record 56 wins after the Bobcats swept Kent State, 4-1, and 4-2, in a doubleheader in Athens on Tuesday.
The ‘Cats (22-13, 4-3 MAC) pounced in the early innings of both games offensively, giving Dorsey some comfort that she didn’t have during her starts at Ball State last weekend.
“Cushion is a huge help in this game,” Dorsey said. “It helps me to move on from the home runs faster when they get hit.”
Dorsey, admitted that she didn’t have as much command over her pitches as usual during either of the two games, with each of her three runs given up on a swing of the bat.
“It’s important to have good command on my change-up, but I think that we got by with less command than we usually have,” Dorsey said.
Twenty-three strikeouts more than made up for it, though, and those three home runs were the only runs she’d given up in the series. Her two record-breaking wins also swung Ohio’s momentum back in the right direction. Dorsey credited the scouting of her catcher, Madison Claytor, for her success on the mound, noting how thorough Claytor is in applying what she finds out about other teams to the game.
“It’s all about trusting her and just building in what she calls and then throwing it in full force,” Dorsey said.
It’s probably fitting that Dorsey gave some credit to Claytor for her success in reaching 56 victories, she’s been there for many of them, and Ohio coach Jodi Hermanek shared the same sentiments when discussing Dorsey’s performance after the game.
“(Dorsey) probably wasn’t the sharpest with her command today,” Hermanek said. “But Madison calls great games for her. She did good enough to mix it around the zone and keep them off-balance. They do a great job when they work together.”
So now that credit is given where it’s due – with the most wins in Ohio softball history – is Dorsey the best pitcher Hermanek has ever coached? The answer is simple.
“Yes, hands-down,” Hermanek said. “Most records broken. Most strikeouts. Her great mentality. Best spin. That’s what she’s known for – the way she spins that ball and the way it cuts through the zone.”
By “great mentality,” Hermanek is probably referring to the challenges Dorsey has had to overcome to help Ohio rise in the MAC. Her coaches and her teammates are witnesses to it.
“If anybody who knew the truth about the things she’s endured during her pitching career they’d put her on a pedestal,” Hermanek said. “The team wants it for her.”
Speaking of other records, Ohio’s wins against the Golden Flashes now give the team a positive win-loss total in the MAC and heal the wounds they suffered last weekend when they were swept by Ball State. Hermanek said it was great for the team to turn the corner against one of the top teams in the conference.
“We just needed to put the proof back in the pudding,” Hermanek said. “We’re a great squad. We just got back into our game.”
Ohio plays a 3-game weekend series against Toledo before playing at Kent State once more next week. The first game against Toledo is Friday at 1 p.m.