Walk-Off Win in Twelve
STANFORD, Calif. – After falling behind 7-2 after two innings, Stanford (10-8, 2-5 Pac-12) rallied for one in the third, two in the seventh, two in the ninth and one in the 12th to defeat Washington State (9-12, 1-6 Pac-12) 8-7 on Friday night from Sunken Diamond.
The Cardinal loaded the bases with two outs in the bottom of the 12th inning and junior Brock Jones drew a four-pitch walk to force in the game-winner.
Braden Montgomery walked to lead off the inning, moving to second on a sacrifice bunt before being replaced on the bases by Grant Burton. After a strikeout resulted in the second out, Eddie Park was issued an intentional pass to bring up Joe Lomuscio. Lomuscio, who entered as a pinch runner in the ninth inning, was hit by a pitch to load the bases and bring Jones to the plate. WSU reliever Will Sierra promptly missed with his first four offerings, chasing home Burton and putting an end to a game that lasted five hours and 28 minutes.
Stanford struck first on Friday, plating a pair of runs on RBI-singles from Jones and Brett Barrera. Jones drew four walks and scored three times while hitting out of the third spot in the order, while Barrera finished 3 for 5 with four RBIs.
Washington State did well to make Stanford starter Alex Williams work, forcing him to throw 55 pitches over his 1 2/3 innings. Williams retired the first four men he faced, but surrendered a single to Kyle Russell with two outs in the second inning that started a Cougar rally. A two-out hit-by-pitch and a walk loaded the bases and set the table for a two-RBI double off the wall in right field from Kodie Kolden to tie the game at 2-2. A walk and a two-RBI single from Jack Smith handed WSU the 4-2 lead before Joey Dixon replaced Williams and allowed a three-run homer to Bryce Matthews that capped a seven-run second inning.
Williams was charged with six runs on three hits and two walks with three strikeouts, but the Stanford offense ultimately took him off the hook and handed him a no-decision.
Stanford started chipping away at the deficit in the third, plating a run on a Barrera two-out RBI-single to cut the lead to 7-3.
Carter Graham, who extended his hitting streak to 13 games with a 1 for 4 night, reached on an error charged to right fielder Nate Swarts before scoring on a passed ball in the seventh. Barrera would continue his torrid hitting following a walk to Jones, lacing an RBI-triple into left-center field.
Trailing 7-5 headed to the ninth, Stanford drew even with a pair of runs on three hits. Park led off with a single before Graham shot a single into right-center field to put runners at the corners. A wild pitch moved Lomuscio, who pinch ran for Graham, to second with one out before Barrera grounded a ball to short to bring home a run and cut the deficit to one. After working the count even at 2-2, Drew Bowser delivered the clutch two-out single, punching the game-tying hit into left field to chase home Lomuscio and force extra innings.
The Cardinal bullpen impressed in the series opener, logging the final 10.1 and allowing just one run on four hits with 10 strikeouts. Stanford finished the game by hanging 10 consecutive zeroes.
After Dixon pitched 4 1/3 innings, Nicolas Lopez faced two batters before turning the ball over to Brandt Pancer. Pancer was strong in relief, recording eight outs and passing the baton to Cody Jensen for 1 2/3 innings. Sophomore Ryan Bruno was the final Cardinal pitcher used, allowing just two walks while striking out four over 1 2/3 innings to pick up the victory and move to 1-0 on the season.
Caden Kaelber was saddled with the loss after allowing a run over two innings of work. Kaelber walked three and struck out two before dropping to 0-1 on the year. Washington State used eight pitchers in total on Friday.
Stanford will look to secure the series victory on Saturday when the two teams clash at 2:05 p.m.