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Bears walk off No. 8 Oklahoma State, clinch spot in Big 12 Tournament

Jake Jackson Baylor BSB.jpg
Posted at 11:28 PM, May 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-20 01:15:25-04

WACO, Texas — After trailing No. 8 Oklahoma State 11-3 entering the bottom of the seventh inning, Baylor baseball completed a dramatic comeback, capped off by a walk-off two-run home run by Antonio Valdez. With the win, the Bears secured their place in the Big 12 Tournament.

Tre Richardson opened the scoring for Baylor with two outs in the first inning after Oklahoma State dropped a routine fly ball in left field.

From there, the Cowboys went on a scoring spree, scoring six straight runs. The first four came on a pair of Cowboy home runs.

Oklahoma State extended the lead to 9-2 before Baylor's Jared McKenzie hit his 10th home run of the season in the bottom of the sixth inning to cut the lead to six. However, the Cowboys would answer with two more runs in the top of the seventh inning.

Then Baylor caught fire.

Jacob Schoenvogel hit a two-run single to center field to make it 11-5. After scoring one more run off an Oklahoma State error, McKenzie drew the game within one run on a grand slam, his second home run of the game. Harrison Caley tied the game 11-11 with an RBI single later in the inning.

It stayed that way until the bottom of the ninth inning.

After a leadoff base hit by Beau Wimpee, Valdez corked a walk-off two-run home run that bounced off the top of the right-center field wall, giving Baylor a 13-11 win.

“I’ve never done anything like that in my life," Valdez said. "And as soon as I didn’t get those bunts down, you know, I had to do whatever I could to get Beau [Wimpee] to second base. And Beau getting on base three times is part of that comeback, we don’t win without Beau getting on base again and the pitchers and everybody who contributed. It was everybody tonight and I just can’t believe I did it.”

The win is Baylor's largest comeback victory since May 19, 2017. It was their first walk-off home run since February 2019.

"I tell you what, it’s definitely not how you design it up," Head Coach Steve Rodriguez said. "But, I told our guys at the end of this game - they absolutely won this game. There’s nothing they were given. They did everything that they possibly could, fight, scratch and crawl."