Wodtke's Walk-Off Single Lifts K-State to 5-4 Win
Wodtke's Walk-Off Single Lifts K-State to 5-4 Win
MANHATTAN, Kan. -- With two outs and the bases loaded, Jake Wodtke hit a first-pitch single through the left side to score Shane Conlon and give the K-State baseball team a 5-4 comeback win in 10 innings over Wichita State on Tuesday at Tointon Family Stadium.
Wodtke's walk-off hit capped five unanswered runs for K-State (17-18), which fell behind 4-0 after the top of the fifth inning when Ryan Tinkham of Wichita State (13-23) hit the second of his two home runs. Wodtke's 10th-inning single, one of his two hits in the game, helped the Wildcats tally nine of their 10 hits over the final six innings.
"You do not want to get underneath the ball and be out front," said K-State head coach Brad Hill about Wodtke's plate approach in the final at-bat. "You just want to hit the ball through the infield, and [Wodtke] did a good job of executing it."
The win was K-State's fourth in the last five games and first extra-inning victory of the season. The last Wildcat home win in extra-innings was on May 20, 2011 vs. Kansas (11-10 in 10 innings).
Four Wildcats combined for all 10 of the K-State hits, led by Tyler Moore, who went 3-for-4 with a run scored, and Shane Conlon, who was 3-for-5 with a double. The redshirt senior's double sparked the K-State 10th as he led off the frame by driving a ball to the left field fence. In addition to Wodtke, Clayton Dalrymple went 2-for-4. The junior also had two RBIs, including the game-tying RBI in the bottom of the ninth with two outs.
While the K-State offense kept the pressure on Wichita State, the Wildcat bullpen limited the Shockers, who had 12 hits in the game, to two hits over the final 5 2/3 innings. Jordan Floyd started it all when he induced a groundball double play to end the fifth as the left-hander worked two shutout innings. Lucas Benenati, who forced the Shockers into back-to-back groundouts with the bases loaded in the seventh, finished the night surrendering one hit and one walk while striking out two in 2 2/3 innings. Bryce Ward earned his first career win after throwing a 1-2-3 top of the 10th.
Offensively, K-State had a runner in scoring position in six of the last seven innings. The Wildcats stranded the game-tying run at third in the seventh before seeing a pair of singles in the eighth wiped out by a double play and a caught stealing. K-State broke through, though, in the ninth when Taylor Anderson was hit by a pitch to start the rally. Anderson was lifted for pinch-runner Keith Browning, who stole second and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Following Carter Yagi's two-out walk, Dalrymple struck with a chopper through the left side to plate Browning and even the score at 4-4.
The Wildcats were forced to complete their second comeback win of the season after they fell behind 4-0 in the top of the fifth. The rally began in the bottom half of the frame when K-State scored three runs to cut the margin to one. Moore and Danny Krause started the inning by reaching with a single and a walk, respectively, before Wodtke dropped down a bunt single that was fielded by Wichita State pitcher Chandler Sanburn. The freshman right-hander attempted to put out Wodtke at first, but he made an errant throw that traveled down the first base line, allowing Moore to score and Krause to reach third and Wodtke to second. Carter Yagi drove in Krause with a groundout before Dalrymple plated Wodtke with a double into right field to make it 4-3 Wichita State.
"It was a momentum swing we needed because we were flat to start," said Hill about the three-run fifth. "We were going to need great pitching first and not let [Wichita State] extend the game out, which we got. Then, [we had to] find a way for us to fight back into it offensively, which we did."
Tinkham hit his pair of solo home runs, one in the first off Mark Biesma and the second in the fifth off Brandon Erickson, to help the Shockers build their early four-run advantage.
Biesma was responsible for the first three Wichita State runs as the K-State starting pitcher allowed four of his seven hits in the third to help drive in two runs. With two outs, the right-hander surrendered an infield single that plated the first run while an RBI double by Chase Rader made it 3-0.
Wichita State's Taylor Goshen took the loss after allowing two runs on five hits and three walks in 2 2/3 innings. The right-hander also struck out a game-high five.
K-State will wrap up its homestand this weekend when it takes on No. 19 Texas Tech in a three-game series from April 17-19. First pitch of game one at Tointon Family Stadium is set for 6:30 p.m. on Friday.
Tuesday was K-State's first overall extra-inning win since June 8, 2013 vs. No. 3 Oregon State at the NCAA Corvallis Super Regional. The Wildcats had lost nine straight extra-inning games in regular season action.
K-State tallied 10 hits for the fourth time in the last six games. In 16 home games, the Wildcats have 10 or more hits nine times.
The Wildcats have won six consecutive games against Wichita State and seven of their last eight against the Shockers in Manhattan.