Flashes sweep Buffalo behind Ladines perfect game


Kent State then-junior pitcher Ronnie Ladines pitches against University at Buffalo on April 23. The flashes won both games in their double header. 

Samantha Ross

Ronnie Ladines recorded 15 strikeouts and became the third pitcher to pitch a perfect game in Kent State history this weekend.

“It was outstanding,” said coach Eric Oakley of Ladines’ performance on the mound. “Obviously; It was a 1-0 game and your pitcher throws 15 strikeouts. You can’t ask for much more than that. She was phenomenal. One of the best outings I’ve ever seen.” 

Maddy Grimm was the only one to score for the Flashes (24-24, 12-9 Mid-American Conference) during the first game of the weekend against the University at Buffalo (8-43, 3-18 MAC). She hit a home run in the sixth inning to give Kent a 1-0 lead.

“She hits a lot of shots — some just float over (and) some are just absolute no-doubters,” Oakley said of her home run. “This was an absolute no-doubter.” 

Holly Speers sat out for her third game in a row, in the series opener. 

“We’re picking and choosing her a little bit,” Oakley said of Speers’ playing time. “That’s really just a circumstance situation. You’ll probably see her tomorrow.”

Speers came back on Saturday and made her presence known immediately, hitting two home runs in the first game of the doubleheader on Saturday to help give the Flashes a 11-1 victory over Buffalo.

Buffalo’s only run was an unearned run scored by Ufuoma Ogagan in the third inning on a pass ball.

Madi Huck pitched seven innings, allowing nine hits and striking out three.

“Madi had a great outing,” Oakley said. “It’s nice that we’re able to take three games and have the pitching for all three games.”

The last game ended after five innings with a score of 10-0.

Ladines hit a three run home run in the fourth inning and scored a run in the fifth inning, an inning where the Flashes scored seven runs. 

“This was great,” Oakley said of the team’s approach. “Any time you have 27 hits and 21 runs in two games, that’s a great day at the plate. Our defense was spectacular and our pitching was top notch. I’m really proud of them. They got three wins, and we needed three wins.”

The Flashes take on Ohio State University Wednesday at 4 p.m.

Samantha Ross is a sports reporter, contact her at [email protected]