7th-inning splurge propels No. 22 Indiana to 15-5 run-rule win over Baylor

Junior outfielder Ty Johnson (23) recorded his second multi-hit game of the year, as he went 3-for-4 at the plate against No. 22 Indiana on Sunday at Baylor Ballpark. Kassidy Tsikitas | Photo Editor

By Michael Haag | Sports Editor

The game was right there for the taking when Baylor baseball trailed by one run through six innings. The Bears committed two errors and stranded seven runners at that point in the game, and head coach Mitch Thompson said the team felt good about its chances of salvaging the series against No. 22 Indiana.

But the Hoosiers scored 11 runs over the next two innings to force a 15-5 run-rule victory on Sunday afternoon at Baylor Ballpark.

“Until the seventh inning, it’s a ballgame,” Thompson said. “They got after us in the seventh and eighth innings, and that’s disappointing that the game got away from us, because we had a shot. … We ended up needing six or seven attempts to get that third out in the seventh inning. We didn’t get it, and then a grand slam and all of a sudden, the game’s out of hand.”

Baylor baseball used 24 different Bears on Sunday, including nine different pitchers. Kassidy Tsikitas | Photo Editor
Baylor baseball used 24 different Bears on Sunday, including nine different pitchers. Kassidy Tsikitas | Photo Editor

The Bears (1-6) dropped all three contests to the Hoosiers (6-1), who saw monster performances by sophomore outfielder Devin Taylor (.636, three home runs, five RBIs) and senior outfielder Morgan Colopy (.357, one home run, eight RBIs).

Senior right-handed pitcher Jared Matheson (0-1) only lasted 1.0 inning on the mound, as he gave up three runs — one unearned — on two hits, one walk and had a wild pitch. Thompson said Indiana deserves credit for how it played this weekend, but his team needs to perform better.

“We’re going to keep working at it,” Thompson said. “That’s just the message I sent to the players. We have to have pitchers who, when they come in the game, they have stuff and they can locate their stuff, throw fastballs for strikes and have a secondary pitch that they can count on. And you have to be able to get real college hitters out with it. If you can’t, and if you pitch soft, then you’re in trouble.”

Junior outfielder Ty Johnson (3-for-4, one run) and junior infielder Hunter Teplanszky (2-for-4, one run) were the only Baylor players to record more than one hit. The Bears totaled a season-high 11 hits but left 12 runners on base.

Indiana opened the game with a two-spot in the first inning, courtesy of a two-run blast by Taylor. Baylor responded by cutting its deficit in half in the bottom side, as Johnson made his way around the bases.

Johnson led off with a double down the right-field line and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Redshirt junior outfielder Enzo Apodaca flew out to left field for the second out of the side, allowing Johnson to tag and score.

Matheson was pulled early in the top of the second after giving up a leadoff single and advancing that baserunner to second on a botched pickoff attempt at first base.

Redshirt junior right-handed pitcher Patrick Hail took over on the bump and would’ve ended the threat if the Hoosiers hadn’t scored a two-out run on an infield throwing error. Hail finished his day with 2.0 innings of solid relief, only allowing one earned run on two hits and recording three strikeouts.

Indiana tacked on another run in the top of the third with a 422-foot solo shot to left center, making it a 4-1 ballgame. Baylor didn’t answer until the bottom of the fourth when it plated two runners on three hits to make it a one-run game.

Things were quiet for two innings before the Hoosiers opened the floodgates in the top of the seventh. The Bears went through four different arms in the side as Indiana put up seven runs and went around the order with 12 different at-bats. Six of those runs came with two outs, highlighted by Colopy’s grand slam over the left-field wall.

The Hoosiers went from a 4-3 lead to an 11-3 advantage after that top half of the inning. Baylor brought home two more runs across the seventh and eighth, but four Indiana runs in the top of the eighth triggered the run-rule victory.

Baylor now welcomes Abilene Christian for a midweek bout, as the two teams will square off at 4 p.m. on Wednesday at Baylor Ballpark. The game will be streamed on Big 12 Now on ESPN+ and can be listened to on ESPN Central Texas 1660 AM/92.3 FM radio.

Thompson said he’s glad the team is amid a seasonlong nine-game homestand, as the squad now has a quick opportunity to get that bad taste of its mouth. He added that he expects a “bullpen game” on Wednesday.

“I have a decision to make between a couple guys to start the game, and probably going short leashes with everybody. … But I’m preparing to come up with a new Sunday starter, and we’ll see how that all works. We just have to keep getting better. We’re making some adjustments. We’re having to adjust without Hunter Simmons. We’re doing that.”

The Hoosiers piled up six extra-base hits on Sunday. Kassidy Tsikitas | Photo Editor
The Hoosiers piled up six extra-base hits on Sunday. Kassidy Tsikitas | Photo Editor
Michael Haag is a third year Journalism student from Floresville, a small town about 30 miles south of San Antonio. Haag is entering his third year at the Lariat and is hoping to continue developing his sports reporting skill set. After graduation, he plans to work on a Master’s degree in Journalism in order to one day teach at the college level. He does, however, plan on becoming a sports reporter for a publication after grad school.