Oklahoma State used an eight-run fifth inning to rally for a comeback win Wednesday night in the opening round of the Big 12 Championship as the 11th-ranked Cowboys knocked off Texas, 10-4, at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark.
Conor Costello smashed a grand slam to tie a career high with four RBIs, while Donnie Walton – on his 22nd birthday – went 3-for-5 at the plate with a pair of doubles and drove in three runs.
With the win, the second-seeded Cowboys improve to 36-18 and move into a winner's bracket game against No. 3-seed TCU Thursday at 7:30 p.m.
OSU entered the pivotal fifth inning with just three hits and in the midst of being shut out by UT starter Ty Culbreth. But the Cowboys quickly caught fire as they sent 12 batters to the plate and erupted for eight runs on five hits.
Ryan Sluder got things started with a leadoff double before a Jon Littell single and a walk to Collin Theroux loaded the bases with no outs.
After J.R. Davis reached on an error and picked up an RBI to bring home OSU's first run, Corey Hasseland Walton delivered back-to-back RBI singles to cut the Cowboys' deficit to 4-3.
The Pokes were just getting started. After Garrett Benge popped up out, Costello stepped to the plate and crushed a grand slam to left-center field to put OSU on top, 7-4. The blast was Costello's third homer of the season, and the four RBIs with one swing of the bat saw him tie a career high set last season.
OSU's final run in the big inning came compliments of two-straight errors by the Texas infield that allowed Sluder to come home and give the Cowboys an 8-4 advantage.
The eight-run inning tied for the highest scoring total in an inning by OSU this season; the Cowboys also tallied eight runs in the third inning in an April 24 win vs. TCU.
The Cowboys added their final runs in the sixth and eighth innings, both on RBI hits by Walton, to cruise to the win.
OSU fell behind early in the contest as Texas touched starter Trey Cobb for a pair of runs on three hits in its first at bat, getting an RBI double by Travis Jones before a single off the bat of Tres Barrera made it 2-0.
The Longhorns doubled their lead in the fifth. After a leadoff single by Jake McKenzie ended Cobb's night on the mound, Remey Reed came out of the OSU bullpen, but RBI singles by Zane Gurwitz and Barrera extended the lead to 4-0.
Reed earned the win with two scoreless innings of work as he improved to 4-1 on the season, whileMichael Mertz kept the Longhorns off the scoreboard over the final three innings, allowing only one hit along the way, to earn his third save.