WICHITA, Kan.- Tyler Weber was a perfect 4-for-4 and the Shockers out-hit New Orleans 16-10, but the Privateers used a ninth inning rally to upset Wichita State, 7-6, Friday night.
No. 4 seed New Orleans defeated No.1 seed Wichita State in front of a crowd of 7,084, the eighth largest crowd in Shocker history, in the night cap of the NCAA Wichita Regional.
Noah Krol came in to try and close the game for Wichita State, but was ineffective, allowing back-to-back singles from Drew Anderson and Ryan Eden that brought in Nick Schwaner, who had reached on a dropped third strike. Brandon Bowser got his first hit of the night at a pivotal moment, greeting Noah Booth with a single to right-center to plate two runs that gave the lead back to the Privateers, 7-6.
Damon Sublett led off Wichita State’s last chance with a single to right field, but pinch runner Ryan Jones was caught stealing second to clear the bags. Closer Adam Campbell got the next two batters in order to secure the win.
Campbell picked up his eighth save of the season and Stephen Whalen improved to 9-5 with the win. The junior reliever allowed one earned run on five hits and one walk over 2.1 innings of work.
Krol suffered the loss and fell to 1-2, allowing three earned runs on two hits in 0.2 innings.
It was a short night for Wichita State starter Travis Banwart. The junior right-hander retired the side in order in the first inning, but New Orleans got on base in the second and ran away with three runs. Banwart issued a walk to Johnny Giavotella to start the frame, then back-to-back singles by Greg Wolfe and Josh Tarnow plated the first run and left runners on the corners. Schwaner grounded out to second, but it was enough to bring home Wolfe. A walk to Jarrod Ware signaled the end for Banwart and Anthony Capra took over on the mound. The Privateers made it 3-0 as Ware and Tarnow each moved up on a double steal of second and home.
Banwart was pegged with three earned runs on two hits and two walks in 1.2 innings.
The Privateers kept it up in the third with a one-out double down the right field line from T.J. Baxter. The hit was followed by a Giavotella single to cross the run and make it 4-0.
The Shockers finally broke through in the bottom half on the inning to cut the lead in half, 4-2. Centerfielder Brandon Bowser and shortstop Ware gave chase to a Tyler Weber looped single, but the ball fell into the hole for a lead-off base hit. Andy Dirks pushed one past the second baseman for his second hit of the night and Derek Schermerhorn was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Damon Sublett ripped the ball up the middle to drive in two runs, but a double play ended the rally.
Weber helped WSU come to within one with an RBI double hit in between the left field line and the left fielder. The junior catcher drove in Josh Workman, who had singled to the gap in shallow right-center field, to make it 4-3 in the fourth.
Andy Womack took control in the top of the sixth and threw three shutout innings, scattering three hits and picking up three strikeouts.
With two outs in the bottom of the sixth, Workman put one back up the middle for a single. Tyler Hill shot one over the head of the shortstop for a hit and the third consecutive single, a line drive to shallow left field from Weber, knotted the game at four.
An error by the New Orleans shortstop led to Wichita State’s first lead, and the Shockers tacked on one more to go ahead, 6-4, in the seventh. Dusty Coleman reached safely on the mishap and Dirks followed with a bunt placed just out of reach of the pitcher and third baseman. Schermerhorn was on with a fielder’s choice that erased Dirks, but reliever Stephen Whalen hit Sublett to juice the bases. Matt Brown fired one through the right side to drive in Coleman, and Schermerhorn was awarded home after a collision with the third baseman.
Dirks also had four hits, while Sublett and Weber each contributed two RBI. Giavotella went 2-for-3 with a walk, run and an RBI for New Orleans.
Wichita State plays Oral Roberts in an elimination game at 1 p.m. Saturday afternoon before New Orleans faces Arizona at 7 p.m.