Huskers drop second straight to OSU

Deik Scram's three-run, eighth-inning homer sparked a four-run rally, as Oklahoma State rallied for a 7-6 victory over No. 3 Nebraska Sunday afternoon at Allie P. Reynolds Stadium. Scram's homer off of NU reliever Charlie Shirek was the go-ahead shot, as the Cowboys (33-13, 12-8 Big 12) rallied from a 6-3 deficit and held on as the Huskers seemingly regained the lead in the ninth on a two-run homer by Luke Gorsett, only to have the call overruled.

Trailing 7-6, Wehrle's one-out single off OSU reliever Jordy Mercer started a Husker threat. Two batters later, Gorsett hit a 1-2 pitch off the screen down the left field line. Home plate umpire Chris Koskey called the ball fair after a short delay, to the delight of the Huskers and to the ire of the OSU bench and the majority of the 2,461 fans at the ballpark. OSU coach Frank Anderson immediately ran on to the field in protest, setting off the first of two long arguments on the call. Following the argument, the umpires met and reversed Coskey's initial ruling, prompting another argument which saw NU Head Coach Mike Anderson get ejected.

"The home plate umprire called it fair," Mike Anderson said. "I saw a home run and it looked fair."

"I didn't get to see if the ball was fair or foul,"  said Gorsett, who was rounding first as the call was made. "I got a change-up low and a got out in front of it."

NU still had an opportunity to win the game in the ninth, as Gorsett singled to right to put runners on the corners. Mercer then ended NU's rally, striking out Andy Gerch, who had two hits including his first homer since Feb. 19, to end the game and snapping NU's streak of 12 straight Big 12 series wins dating back to last April.

Bryce Nimmo and Jake Opitz had three hits apiece, as the Huskers outhit OSU, 15-10,  but was done in by four homers which accounted for six of the Cowboys' seven runs. Shelby Ford had three hits, including a pair of solo homers, while Tyler Mach also had three hits in the victory.

Shriek, who came in relief of starter Tony Watson in the sixth and got NU out of a jam, was crusiing, retiring the first five hitters he faced entering the eighth. After a Corey Brown single, Ford hit a seeing-eye single between first and second to put two on with no outs. Mach pulled OSU with 6-4 with an RBI single to left before Scram sent a 0-1 pitch over the fence in right center, the first homer Shirek (3-2) had allowed in 50 innings this season.

Despite the loss, NU Coach Mike Anderson is optimistic that the Huskers' respond the series finale on Monday.

"Every year, you are going to lose some games, including some which are heartbreakers, but if we are going to lose games, I'm glad it is with this team because they will repond in a great way tomorrow," Anderson said.

Nebraska jumped out in the first, taking advantage of a Mercer error to plate a pair of runs. A pair of singles and a fielder's choice put runners on first and third with two outs before Brandon Buckman stole second to put both Husker runners in scoring position. Gorsett then hit a smash to short, which was misplayed by Mercer to allow both runs to score. NU continued to threaten, as Gerch was hit by a pitch before Opitz singled off OSU starter Brae Wright to load the bases, but Jeff Christy lined out to left to end the inning.

The Cowboys got one of the runs back in the bottom of the first on a solo homer off the bat of Ford, only the third homer Watson has allowed in 70 innings this season.

Oklahoma State used the long ball to regain the lead in the bottom of the third, as Corey Brown and Ford hit back-to-back one-out homers off Watson, including the second of the game for Ford, whose blast cleared the 25-foot high net in left.

Nebraska opened the sixth with some power hitting of its own, as Gerch opened the frame with a solo homer that caromed off the top of the fence in left center. Opitz then followed with a homer of this own to left center, his second of the year and the third time NU has hit back-to-back homers this season.

Watson settled down after the third, as he allowed six hits over 5.2 innings and left with a 4-3 lead after the Huskers pushed across two runs in the sixth.

Wehrle's efforts helped the Huskers add another run in the seventh. With one out, Wehrle singled to center, stole second and moved to third on a throwing error by OSU catcher Matt Clarkson. Two batters later, Gorsett plated Wehrle with a single to left, chasing OSU starter Brae Wright after 6.2 innings.

The Huskers pushed the lead to 6-3 off reliever Oliver Odle in the eighth on Christy's RBI single. Consecutive singles by Gerch and Opitz put runners on the corners before hit a ball up the middle to score Gerch.

The Huskers and Cowboys will conclude the series Monday night at 6:30 p.m. The game will carried across the state on the Pinnacle Sports Network and on


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