Sometimes, all it takes is one good inning.
A three-run first inning buoyed the Cowboys to a season opening 3-1 victory over Wichita State.
OSU collected three hits in the frame. Catcher Max Hewitt drove in the first run of the young season with a ball to left field on a fielder’s choice. First baseman Alix Garcia, who finished the game 3-4 with two doubles, doubled to right center, scoring Hewitt and Justin Campbell.
After the first inning of free-flowing offense, things got a little tighter offensively as the Pokes were outhit 11-4 from that point.
“We had a good first inning,” OSU coach Josh Holliday said. “Alix’s double early in the game was a huge swing.”
The Cowboys again threatened offensively in the eight inning when they had men on the corners and one out. Senior OSU outfielder Cade Cabbiness attempted to drop a bunt down to bring home his teammate, Hewitt, who was on third. The bunt was too hard and WSU pitcher Tommy Barnhouse threw home to cut down Hewitt for the second out. Third baseman Christian Encarnacion-Strand struck out, ending the threat.
“We were in position to score a couple of other times, but maybe tried too hard with a runner on third and less than two outs with a couple of strikeouts, but that happens sometimes early in the season,” Holliday said.
Holliday credited the WSU pitching staff, saying that the Shockers did a good job of mixing up their pitches and throwing fastballs, but acknowledged that hits might have been tough to come by with the way the team has been forced to practice the past week.
“I was curious how we would handle coming back outside after two weeks of being indoors and really not seeing any live pitching,” Holliday said.