By Rachel Caton
WACO — The No. 25 Baylor Bears outlasted Texas Southern in an 11-inning affair Tuesday night, recording their third walk-off win of the season after coming from behind to defeat the Tigers 3-2 at Baylor Ballpark.
Ryan Bertelsman provided the dramatics, driving in the game-winning run in the bottom of the 11th, his second walk-off hit of the season.
The Bears used a combination of five pitchers to hold the Tigers (6-18) to just two runs on five hits. Offensively, Nick Loftin and Davis Wendzel went a combined 6-for-8 to lead the way.
Tyler Thomas got the start for the Bears, but was chased after just one inning of work. Blake Helton, the first man out of the bullpen, matched his career high with four innings pitched and also recorded a career-high three strikeouts.
The Bears (18-6) opened the scoring in the bottom of the fourth with a two-out RBI from Cole Haring that scored Shea Langeliers. Then, it was back to work for Helton as he retired the side in order in the fifth.
Helton began the sixth on the mound, but was pulled after allowing back-to-back hits to start the inning. Jacob Ashkinos came on in relief, but not before the Tigers scored two runs on two hits and one error to take a 2-1 lead.
Ashkinos came back to strike out the side in the seventh and the Bears knotted the score at 2-2 in the bottom half as Loftin singled home Haring.
The score remained tied as Luke Boyd and Kyle Hill put up four innings of zeros for the Bears. They combined to allow just one hit and recorded a pair of punchouts.
Baylor left the bases loaded in the 10th, their best scoring chance until the bottom of the 11th, when Loftin singled, Wendzel was intentionally walked and Bertelsman came through with the game-winning knock.
Kyle Hill (4-0) earned his team-leading fourth win of the season while Tigers’ reliever Chris Suarez (0-2) was hit with the loss.
The Bears will hit the road for their first Big 12 conference series away from Baylor Ballpark as they take on the Kansas Jayhawks in a three-game series in Lawrence, Kan. with game one scheduled for Friday, March 30 at 6 p.m. CT.
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