WACO (March 28, 2013) -- A crucial turn of events in the bottom of the sixth and top of the seventh led to a Baylor 3-2 loss to Kansas State in the Bears’ Big 12 home opener on Thursday evening at Baylor Ballpark.
With the game tied 2-2 in the bottom of the sixth, the Bears (11-15, 1-3 Big 12) had a very promising start as Cal Towey led off with a triple and Steve DalPorto was hit by KSU (18-8, 3-1 Big 12) starter Joe Flattery’s pitch. However, the Wildcats went to the bullpen early and brought in Levi MaVorhis, who calmly struck out Jake Miller and Nate Goodwin swinging. He then induced a Logan Brown groundout to third to escape unscathed.
With momentum in hand, KSU led off the top of the seventh with a single from Blair DeBord, which led to BU starter Dillon Newman’s departure. Crayton Bare came in and got an out on a sacrifice bunt, but was unable to handle the next play. Ross Kivett dropped down another bunt that was fielded by Bare but his throw was late and wide and went into foul territory, allowing DeBord to score.
"No doubt, we had a royal opportunity there after Cal got the leadoff triple and [DalPorto] got hit by the pitch,” said BU Head Coach Steve Smith. “Credit their guys. They put a couple freshmen out there that when they came into the game really competed, really controlled the game. I thought they competed well. I hate to say that we didn't compete but the games all about execution and they out-did us tonight. "
The miscue proved costly but Baylor also had a good chance in the eighth. Towey again led off with a hit, this time a single. Following a pitching change to Jake Matthys and a DalPorto sacrifice bunt, pinch-hitters Wes Mercurio and Adam Toth struck out swinging to end the threat.
Prior to the game being tied, Baylor jumped out to a 1-0 lead on a Grayson Porter sacrifice fly that scored Brown after a leadoff single. But Kansas State answered back with two runs in the second on a Jon Davis triple and DeBord single.
BU then knotted the game in the fourth on a Nate Goodwin double, scoring Jake Miller after a one-out single.
MaVorhis (3-0) earned the win in relief, allowing just two hits in two innings with three strikeouts. Matthys picked up his second save with two perfect innings and three strikeouts. Newman (3-2) took his second straight tough-luck loss, surrendering three runs (two earned) on nine hits in six innings with four strikeouts.
The teams continue the series tomorrow at 6:35 p.m. CT and 1 p.m. on Saturday. Friday’s pitching matchup presents BU RHP Max Garner (1-3, 3.12 ERA) against KSU RHP Nate Williams (3-3, 3.37 ERA) while Saturday will feature BU RHP Austin Stone (0-2, 5.14 ERA) versus KSU RHP Matt Wivinis (4-0, 4.46 ERA).