Huskers Win Wild Wichita Weekend Finale
Wichita, Kan. – The Nebraska baseball team (6-5) handed Wichita State its first loss of the season in a 10-9 victory in 10 innings at Eck Stadium on a windy Sunday afternoon. In its last 15 Sunday games, Nebraska is 14-0-1, dating back to the 2016 season.
The Huskers trailed 7-2 after four innings, but battled back before Jesse Wilkening’s go-ahead home run in the 10th inning. NU faced a 9-7 deficit in the ninth inning before Zac Repinski smashed a two-run homer to send the game to extra innings.
Senior right-hander Matt Warren made his third start of the season and threw 3.1 innings, giving up seven runs (six earned runs). Paul Tillotson (2.2 innings), Mike Waldron (2.0) and Jake Hohensee (2.0) each came out of the bullpen for the first time during the weekend.
The Huskers struck first with one run in the top of the first. Mojo Hagge hit a leadoff single and advanced to second on a flyout. He scored when Scott Schreiber reached on an error. In the bottom of the first, Wichita State evened the score at 1-1. The inning started with back-to-back singles before a strikeout. An error on a fielder’s choice loaded the bases. The Shockers scored on an RBI groundout.
NU’s batters went down in order in the top of the second. The Shockers took a 2-1 lead in the bottom half of the second frame. After a one-out walk, the runner stole second and advanced to third on a throwing error during the play. The runner scored on an RBI double to center field.
The Huskers tied it at 2-2 with one run in the third. Jeff Athey was hit-by-pitch in the leadoff spot, but was thrown out at second on a fielder’s choice that put Repinski on first. After stealing second, Repinski scored on Angelo Altavilla’s RBI single. WSU tacked on a run in the third after the first three batters reached base.
Wilkening managed a leadoff single, but a flyout and back-to-back fielder’s choices ended NU’s chance to add runs in the fourth. Wichita State added four runs in the bottom of the fourth to build a 7-2 advantage. Alec Bohm hit a grand slam for the second time this series, which marked his third home run against the Huskers this weekend.
The Huskers responded with five runs in the top of the fifth to tie the score at 7-7. Athey, Hagge and Repinski each singled as the first three batters of the inning. Altavilla’s sacrifice fly scored Athey before Schreiber walked to load the bases again. Hagge scored on a wild pitch before Wilkening’s two-RBI double. Roskam also doubled to score one run before back-to-back strikeouts ended the inning. WSU answered back with one run to take an 8-7 edge.
After Athey reached on a leadoff walk, a double play and strikeout ended NU’s chance to score in the sixth. The Shockers added one run to make it 9-7 after six innings, but left two runners stranded after an inning-ending pickoff at third base.
All three of NU’s batters in the seventh were retired. The Shockers also went down in order in the bottom half of the frame.
NU went down 1-2-3 in the top of the eighth with two strikeouts. Waldron also retired all three hitters when the Shockers batted in the bottom of the eighth.
In the top of the ninth, Hagge hit a one-out single before Repinski blasted a home run to tie the game. Hohensee entered the game for the bottom of the ninth, and with two outs and a runner on third in a tie game, forced an inning-ending groundout that sent the game to extra innings.
In the 10th inning, Wilkening smashed a leadoff solo shot to give NU a one-run lead. Wichita State had a baserunner in the bottom of the 10th after an error, but a groundout ended the game.
Nebraska’s home opener is set for Thursday, March 8 at 1:35 p.m. (CT) at Hawks Field at Haymarket Park. It is the first contest of a four-game series between the Huskers and Cal Poly.