MORGANTOWN, W.Va.–The West Virginia University baseball team used a late-game surge to come-from-behind and knock off Kansas State 8-5 on Friday night at Monongalia County Ballpark.
Marques Inman went 4-for-5 with one RBI and Darius Hill went 3-for-4 with a home run and two RBIs. Ivan Gonzalez and Brandon White each had two hits.
“Our offensive approach has been really good here lately,” head coach Randy Mazey said. “The guys are really buying in with what we’re trying to do, and it shows. Even the games we’ve lost recently, we’ve out-hit our opponents, or most of them. The offense is starting to come around. We just need to get more and more pitching performances. BJ (Myers) threw pretty well tonight. For a guy that’s learning something new, and they (Kansas State) throw seven left-handers at him, that’s a pretty good outing for him.”
Right-hander Sam Kessler (3-0) earned the win for the Mountaineers (18-17, 3-7 Big 12). The sophomore pitched 1.1 innings and did not allow a hit while fanning two.
Starter BJ Myers tossed 6.0 innings, giving up five runs (three earned) on five hits. He struck out six and walked five.
The Wildcats (16-22, 2-11) jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first inning courtesy of throwing error. Myers’ throwing error allowed the first run to score. Then Trent McMaster knocked in a run with a base hit to left field.
Drew Mount extended Kansas State’s lead to 4-0 in the third when he doubled down the left field line.
However, WVU responded in the bottom half when Kyle Gray grounded into a double play, allowing White to score from third.
In the fifth, the Mountaineers cut the deficit to 4-3. Back-to-back singles from White and Hill started the inning. Inman then singled home White and Gray followed with an RBI single to bring home Hill.
After Myers retired 10 in a row, he gave up a leadoff single and walk in the seventh inning. Righty Shane Ennis came in and got a pair of outs but the Wildcats scored another unearned run on a failed pickoff attempt by Gonzalez.
WVU responded in the bottom half, scoring two runs and tying the game at 5-5. Inman started the frame with a double, Gray walked and freshman third baseman Tyler Doanes reached on a sacrifice bunt and a fielding error to load the bases. A wild pitch plated Inman, and a groundout by Gonzalez scored Gray.
Junior Braden Zarbnisky started the eighth with a base hit. Then the left fielder stole second and advanced to third on a throwing error. He scored on a wild pitch, giving the Mountaineers a 6-5 edge. Hill’s two-run bomb to right field gave WVU some insurance runs.
Inman’s four hits matched a career high for the sophomore.
The two teams resume play on Saturday at 4 p.m. ET. Sunday’s series finale will begin at 1 p.m.
Cover Photo Credit: Jeff Ruff