WVU Baseball Wins 9-5, Takes Series at No. 18 Oklahoma State
WVU Baseball won their second straight game on Saturday night, defeating No. 18 Oklahoma State 9-5 on the road.
The Cowboys chased Mountaineers’ starter Blaine Traxel from the game after just 3.2 innings, but sophomore right hander Aidan Major allowed just two hits across 5.1 innings to steady the Mountaineers. Left fielder Landon Wallace hit a three-run home run in the eighth to give the Mountaineers a lead that would stick.
Oklahoma State loaded the bases with two outs in the first. Center fielder Zach Ehrhard reached on a fielding error from Mountaineers’ third baseman Caleb McNeely. The play could’ve ended the inning, but instead spotted the Cowboys a 2-0 lead.
The Mountaineers drew even in the third. Shortstop Tevin Tucker singled, center fielder Braden Barry reached on a bunt single and Wallace walked to juice the bases. Catcher Dayne Leonard lifted a foul ball to the warning track in right, making an out but allowing the runners to advance. Cowboys’ starter Ben Abram returned to the mound without the ball, plating another run on the ensuing balk.
Top 3 | Mountaineers 2, Cowboys 2@dayne_leonard hits a sacrifice fly and then a second run comes in on a balk as the pitcher went back to the mound without the ball!
Never seen that one before 🤷♂️#HailWV pic.twitter.com/iLHvJMJ3AW
— WVU Baseball (@WVUBaseball) April 15, 2023
Oklahoma State re-established a two-run lead in the fourth. Doubles from catcher Chase Adkison, shortstop Marcus Brown and second baseman Roc Riggio made it 4-2.
Major Sets the Tone
After a walk and a strikeout, Aidan Major took over for Traxel, who sat at 90 pitches after five walks hampered him. Major began his day with seven straight outs.
The Mountaineers didn’t waste any time responding in the top of the fifth. Designated hitter Logan Sauve singled, as did Tucker, and Barry drew a walk to load the bases with no outs. Wallace singled to plate a run, Leonard grounded into a double play to tie it, and McNeely gave West Virginia the lead on a single of his own as the Mountaineers chased Abram from the game.
Right fielder Carson Benge singled to lead off the bottom of the seventh. A bunt moved him to second, and another single from designated hitter Nolan Schubert tied the game 5-5.
Mountaineers Turn the Tide
Cowboys’ reliever Isaac Stebens recorded the first two outs of the eighth on just four pitches with a pair of flyouts. Sauve walked, leaving the game for pinch-runner Tyler Cox. Tucker singled to left field and Barry hit an infield single to first baseman David Mendham. Mendham rushed a low throw on an error that allowed Cox to score the tiebreaking run.
Wallace added all the insurance the Mountaineers’ would need on the next pitch, depositing it over the right field wall for a three-run homer, and a 9-5 lead.
LANDO-💣@landonwallace delivers the big blow with a three-run home run!!
Mountaineers lead 9-5 in the eighth!#HailWV pic.twitter.com/xCrvCFiF2W
— WVU Baseball (@WVUBaseball) April 16, 2023
Major sent the last six batters down in order to secure the victory.
WVU Baseball moves to 25-10 on the season (5-3 Big 12). They look to sweep the series at 1pm tomorrow, with Robby Porco on the mound.