April 8, 2014
STILLWATER, Okla. – Oklahoma State won its sixth-straight non-conference game Tuesday night as the 18th-ranked Cowboys knocked off Arkansas-Little Rock, 7-6, at Allie P. Reynolds Stadium.
The victory marked OSU’s 14th come-from-behind win this season as it improved to 23-10 overall. The Cowboys are also now 8-0 on the year in one-run games.
Freshman Garrett Williams racked up 10 strikeouts, the most by a Cowboy pitcher this season, and allowed just two earned runs in six innings of work to improve to 3-0, and senior Brendan McCurry notched his eighth save of the year to move within one of the OSU career mark.
Offensively, Donnie Walton collected half of OSU’s six hits as the shortstop went 3-for-3 with a home run and two singles. The Cowboys plated six unearned runs against three UALR pitchers.
UALR (13-17) took the game’s initial lead in its first at bat, getting an RBI single from Justin Steelmon and scoring on a balk to go up, 2-0.
The Cowboys answered in the bottom of the inning when Walton cut their deficit in half with a solo home run over the right-field wall, his second round tripper of the year.
The visitors added two more runs in the second, getting another RBI single and plating their fourth run on an error.
But in the third, OSU rallied for four runs, collecting two hits and taking advantage of a pair of UALR errors, to take a lead it would never surrender. Gage Green provided the Cowboys’ first run with a sacrifice fly, and two batters later, Zach Fish delivered an RBI single.
Up next, Tim Arakawa picked up an RBI single of his own, and on the play, Fish scored the go-ahead run on an error by UALR right fielder Tanner Rockwell to put the Cowboys on top by a 5-4 count.
OSU’s final two runs came in the fifth on back-to-back RBIs by Arakawa and Craig McConaughy that gave the Cowboys a 7-4 advantage.
But coach Josh Holliday’s ball club would have to hold off a late rally by UALR to secure the win.
In the seventh, the Trojans pulled to within one when they tagged OSU reliever Blake Battenfield for a pair of runs on three hits.
OSU would call on McCurry to open the eighth inning, and the Cowboys’ closer quickly retired UALR in order, picking up a pair of strikeouts along the way.
In the ninth, McCurry surrendered a leadoff single to Ben Crumpton, who then advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt. But McCurry struck out Rockwell before getting Steelmon to fly out to end the game.
OSU returns to Big 12 Conference action Friday when the Cowboys travel to Morgantown, W.Va. to take on West Virginia. Friday’s opener is set for a 5 p.m. (CST) start.