Kansas earns walk-off win against Baylor
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Down four runs in the seventh, Kansas stormed back to earn its second walk-off in as many games to beat Baylor 9-8 at Arrocha Ballpark. The Jayhawks earned their first Big 12 opening game win since March 28, 2014, when Kansas beat Oklahoma State, 1-0, in Lawrence.
Despite 12 walks and Baylor opening up the game with a 7-0 advantage, the Jayhawks held resilient and were able to slowly work away at the Lady Bear lead.
Kansas earned its first run of the game in the second inning and added another run in the third. Baylor responded with its final run of the game in the fourth.
The Jayhawks put themselves in striking distance with a three-run sixth inning, which started with a Miranda Rodriguez RBI double, scoring Sydnee Ramsey.
After working the bases loaded, Kansas earned its next two runs on ground outs by Emily Bermel and Tarin Travieso.
Down 8-5 in the seventh, KU needed to repeat its efforts in the sixth inning to force extra innings, but the Jayhawks wanted more than that.
A Baylor error opened the inning and allowed Becki Monaghan to reach base. A single by Ramsey put runners on first and second, and Rodriguez again provided a timely hit with a RBI single up the middle.
A single by Jennifer Marwitz to left field in the next at bat scored the Jayhawks second run of the inning.
Shelby Hughston put the ball in play and grounded out to the Baylor third baseman, which earned KU the game-tying run.
With two outs Bermel singled to the outfield and Marwitz raced home, evading the Baylor throw to earn KU the victory.
Hannah Todd pitched the final four innings and earned her second win of the season.
- Morgyn Wynne hit her fifth home run in six games after a solo home run in the third inning.
- Kansas has won six of its last seven games, including back-to-back walk-off wins.
- KU earned its first Big 12 opening game win since March 28, 2014 when the Jayhawks beat Oklahoma State, 1-0, in Lawrence, Kansas.
On beating Baylor to start the three-game series …
We have competed well late in games all season long. We have not been a team that has quit and that helped us today. We chipped away early at the Baylor lead and put ourselves in situations to stay in the game. I am proud of our fight and that we didn’t quit early on down seven runs in the first two innings. We struggled on the mound today with too many walks, but when we throw strikes and let our defense play, we are able to stay in the game and get outs. That is what kept is in the game along with their fight.
On Emily Bermel’s game-winning hit …
Emily is a sneaky surprise. She puts the ball in play with few strikeouts, and that is what I love about her. We have pinch hit for her a few times this season because of game situations, but when the game is on the line she has produced. She is a senior and competes every day in practice, which has paid off for her today.
On the opening schedule prior to Baylor and how the preparation went this week …
We had a tough early-season schedule, which helps when you face the competitive teams in the Big 12. We had a really great week of practice, and focused all week long on Baylor and how we could beat them. I was disappointed early because we fell behind seven runs and that was not how we had practiced all week. The players have confidence and swagger now, and they enjoy playing softball and what winning feels like. Tomorrow we have to come focused one game at a time.
Kansas hosts Baylor for a doubleheader on Sunday, March 31 starting at 11 a.m. The first game between the Jayhawks and Lady Bears is KU’s annual Jayhawks for a Cure game, while game two is the Superhero game.
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