WVU Comes Back to Beat Kansas

  • By Nick Arthur
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  • May 21, 2014 01:43 PM
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Freshman Jackson Cramer, right, celebrates with teammate Brad Johnson after hitting his first career home run to give WVU a 10-8 lead in the seventh inning. 
OKLAHOMA CITY - After trailing by six runs in the seventh inning, the No. 6 seed West Virginia University baseball team came back to knock off No. 3 seed Kansas, 10-9, in the first game of the 2014 Phillips 66 Big 12 Baseball Championship, earlier today in Oklahoma City.
The Mountaineers, who improved to 28-24 on the season, used an eight-run seventh inning, including seven runs with two outs, to erase an 8-2 deficit.
On the day, nine of West Virginia’s 10 runs came with two outs.
“Wow, what a relief. It’s amazing how if any of you are golfers, that sometimes there is a course you play that you just play better on," coach Randy Mazey says. "The last game we played before today on this field, we were down five runs in the seventh inning against Oklahoma State and came back and won that game. The guys got together in the dugout and said been here done that, it’s going to take one spark to get this going.”
Freshman Jackson Cramer led WVU offensively with two hits, including a three-run home run, the first of his career, in the seventh inning with the Mountaineers trailing 8-7 with two outs.
“Coach Mazey told me to get a fastball, and I ended up getting a first fastball in," Cramer says. "I was able to hit it well for a home run. It was good timing for my first home run.”
Billy Fleming (2-for-5), Ryan McBroom (3-for-5), Jacob Rice (2-for-4) and Brad Johnson (2-for-5) all chipped in at least two hits offensively for West Virginia.
Harrison Musgrave started the game and pitched 5.2 innings for the Mountaineers, allowing nine hits and four earned runs.
"I got a little tired today, I am not really used to two weeks of short rest," Musgrave says. "Really today was a struggle all the way around. The first inning I walked a lot of guys, but nobody scored luckily. All I had today was my fastball and they were sitting on it. Today I’d give myself an F, but hopefully if needed somewhere down the road in this tournament I can pitch a little better.”
Sean Carley entered the game in relief in the eighth inning with runners on second and third and no out. Carley got out of the jam allowing just one run and pitched a scoreless ninth to earn his fourth save of the season.
West Virginia struck first with two runs in the first inning. With two outs and no one on base, the Mountaineers recorded three straight two-out hits.
Senior Jacob Rice singled and a KU throwing error allowed Billy Fleming to score from third. Later in the first frame, Rice stole second base. The throw to
second allowed Ryan McBroom to steal home, giving the Mountaineers an early 2-0 lead.
After being shutout through the first four innings, the Jayhawks got things going offensively in the fifth inning. After a double and a Mountaineer error, Kansas scored its first run of the game on a Musgrave wild pitch.
KU then registered a double and a single before a two-run double by senior Tucker Tharp gave the Jayhawks their first lead of the game, 4-2.
Kansas added another run in the sixth. Following a leadoff double by Ryan Pidhaichuk and a sacrifice bunt. A Jayhawk single scored Pidhaichuk, extending the lead to 5-2.
With Ryan Tezak in for relief of Musgrave, Kansas added a two-out, two-run single and a two-out RBI double in the sixth to grab an 8-2 advantage.
The Mountaineers responded, though, by batting around in the seventh. Back-to-back RBI doubles from McBroom and Rice with two outs, then an RBI single by Brad Johnson cut the deficit to 8-7.  Freshman Jackson Cramer followed that up with a three-run shot, his first career home run, giving West Virginia a 10-8 lead.
The Jayhawks would add a run in the eighth against Carley and threatened in the ninth, getting a runner in scoring position with two outs. But the junior from Melbourne, Fla., closed the door to secure the WVU victory.
West Virginia will face the winner of No. 2 seed TCU and No. 7 seed Baylor on Thursday, at 5 p.m., ET, at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. The Horned Frogs and Bears faceoff later today at 1:30 p.m.
Thursday’s game will be televised on affiliates of Fox College Sports, while links to live stats are available on WVUsports.com. The radio broadcast will be on select affiliates of the Mountaineers Sports Network from IMG College.