Baylor Press Release
By: Rachel Caton
WACO, Texas – The Bears defeated visiting Nebraska 8-7 in walk-off fashion in 10 innings on Saturday afternoon at Baylor Ballpark, tying the series up at one game apiece and setting up a rubber game on Sunday.
Redshirt sophomore first baseman Chase Wehsener picked a good time for his first hit of the day, as he delivered an opposite-field single to bring home the game-winning run in Jared McKenzie from second base to walk off the Huskers (1-1).
The Bears (1-1) outhit the Huskers 12-9 on the day and led through the first four frames, 6-1, before a five-run fifth inning for the Huskers, due in part to a grand slam by Aaron Palensky, tied the ballgame up, 6-6.
The Huskers then took a 7-6 lead in the sixth inning off a Ty Roseberry solo home run.
The Bears battled down the stretch, but Husker reliever Max Schreiber kept the Bears off balance through is five innings of work.
In the ninth inning the Bears played small ball to tie things up off Nebraska’s closer Shay Schanaman. Hunter Seay drew a leadoff walk after a great at bat to start things off. Pinch hitter Ryan Bertelsman then legged out an infield single to put two on with nobody out. Esteban Cardoza-Oquendo laid down a beautiful sac bunt to put two in scoring position for the Bears with just one out. Infielder Ricky Martinez then got the job done, tying the ballgame up 7-7 with an infield ground out to second base.
The Bears headed to extra innings with reliever Luke Boyd on the mound. Boyd entered in the top of the ninth and put up a zero, and followed suit with a zero in the 10th.
That set things up for the ninth inning heroics, where Wehsener delivered his first hit of the day, the game winner, after McKenzie led off the inning with a double and the Huskers elected to intentionally walk Andy Thomas ahead of Whesener.
Baylor starter Paul Dickens looked solid through his first four frames, giving up just one run in the first on a solo home run to the leadoff man Cam Chick before getting touched up for five runs on four hits in the fifth inning.
Relievers Daniel Caruso and Tyler Thomas also saw action, with Caruso throwing 2.1 innings, allowing the then-go-ahead homer to Roseberry in the sixth inning and Thomas tossing 1.1 innings of shutout baseball.
Boyd earned the win for the Bears to start off 2020 1-0, while Schanaman took the loss for Nebraska.
- RS-SO Chase Wehsener’s first hit of the day was a big one, a walk-off single in the bottom of the 10th inning, the first walk-off hit of his career.
- SR OF Hunter Seay was impressive in his first start of the year, just the fifth of his career. He was 1-for-3 from the plate with 2 walks and 2 runs scored.
- FR Tre Richardson made his first career start, hitting leadoff as the designated hitter.
- FR Richardson collected his first career hit and first career RBI on a triple to right field in the second inning.
- FR CF Jared McKenzie led the team with a career-high 4 hits, two of those doubles.
- McKenzie stole the first base of his collegiate career and first of the year for the Bears.
- JR INF Nick Loftin led the team with 3 RBI on the day.
- SO INF Ricky Martinez also had a multi-RBI performance with a career-high 2 RBI.
- First baseman Chase Whesener boasts a career fielding percentage of 1.000, has yet to make an error in 425 chances over 55 career games.
- JR INF Nick Loftin and SR C Andy Thomas hit back-to-back solo home runs in the third inning, the first time two Baylor players have done so since Feb. 26, 2019 vs. Dallas Baptist.
- C Andy Thomas gunned out his first base runner of the year and he is now 1-1 in caught stealing. For his career, he is 4-for-6 in catching would-be base stealers.
- INF Loftin’s solo home run was the 13th of his career.
- C Thomas’ solo homer was the 7th of his career.
- SR RHP Luke Boyd made his first appearance of the year, tossing 2.0 innings of shutout baseball to win his first game of the year and fifth of his career. He made his 41st career appearance in the victory.
- Starter LHP Paul Dickens, RHP Daniel Caruso, LHP Tyler Thomas and RHP Luke Boyd made their 2020 season debuts in the victory.