WVU Drops Big 12 Opener To Baylor
The West Virginia University baseball team lost the opening game of a three-game series at Baylor, 6-5, on Friday night at Baylor Ballpark in Waco, Texas.
In the Big 12 Conference opener, the Mountaineers (13-8, 0-1) scored two in the first inning and regained a 5-3 lead in the fifth, but the Bears (14-6, 1-0) rallied with single runs in the seventh, eighth and ninth innings to win it.
WVU scored its five runs, all with two outs, on nine hits, and did not commit an error. BU scored six runs on 11 hits and also did not have an error.
All five of West Virginia’s runs came courtesy of junior first baseman Marques Inman, who had a career-best five RBIs on three hits. He hit a two-run home run in the first inning, his team-high-tying fourth of the season and 13th of his career, and added a three-RBI double in the fifth.
Junior right-handed starter Alek Manoah allowed five runs on eight hits with six strikeouts and two walks in 7.1 innings pitched. Junior right-hander Sam Kessler relieved Manoah and suffered the loss, his first of the year. In 1.0 innings, he gave up a run on three hits with one strikeout.
Along with Inman, junior center fielder Brandon White had a season-best three hits and a run scored in the loss.
Inman gave the Mountaineers an early 2-0 lead in the first inning with his two-run home run. The long ball to left came with two outs and scored senior right fielder Darius Hill, who walked.
Baylor tied the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the first inning. A leadoff walk was followed by an RBI triple, and the second run scored on a groundout. Manoah stranded a pair in the inning.
The Bears took a 3-2 lead in the second, on a sacrifice fly after a leadoff triple.
Manoah then struck out two in a 1-2-3 third inning, and senior catcher Ivan Gonzalez threw out a runner to help Manoah face the minimum in the fourth. After West Virginia regained a 5-3 lead in the top of the fifth, Manoah added a 1-2-3 bottom half to face the minimum three batters for a third consecutive inning.
WVU’s three-run fifth inning was courtesy of Inman’s bases-clearing double. It began with back-to-back bunt singles, by White and freshman shortstopTevin Tucker, and a walk to Gonzalez. With two outs, Inman roped a double into right-center to drive in all three Mountaineers.
The Bears cut into WVU’s advantage in the seventh, on a sac fly to make it 5-4, and tied it at 5-5 in the eighth. The inning began with a single, and a balk and groundout put the runner on third. Kessler relieved Manoah on the mound and got a strikeout for the second out of the eighth. However, it was followed by a single to score the tying run.
Baylor won it in the ninth inning on a walk-off single up the middle. A leadoff single was followed by a sacrifice bunt to advance the runner to second before the game-winning hit, and the runner scored just ahead of White’s throw from shallow center field.
The series continues Saturday at 2:05 p.m. ET. The series at Baylor Ballpark concludes on Sunday at 1:05 p.m. ET.
Saturday and Sunday’s games will be broadcast on FOX Sports Southwest and will be available on FOX Sports Go. Fans can listen to the games on theMountaineer Sports Network from Learfield IMG College on various affiliates throughout the state, while fans across the country can tune into the broadcast online at WVUsports.com/Watch and on the WVU Gameday and TuneIn Radio Apps. Live stats can be found at Baylor.Statbroadcast.com. Direct links to video and radio streams and live stats are available on the baseball schedule page on WVUsports.com.
West Virginia is 13-8 on the season, 7-8 on the road and 0-1 in Big 12 Conference play … WVU has won eight of its last 11 games … The Mountaineers are 10-10 all-time against Baylor and 4-6 in Waco … West Virginia is 12-4 when scoring first and 6-4 when scoring in the first inning … All five of WVU’s runs came with two outs … Marques Inman had a career-high five RBIs and hit his team-high-tying fourth home run of the season and 13th of his career in the first inning … Alek Manoah allowed five runs on eight hits with six strikeouts and two walks in 7.1 innings pitched … Sam Kessler suffered the loss and falls to 1-1 on the season … Brandon White had a season-high three hits.