KANSAS CITY, Kansas – A sac fly in the eighth was the difference as TSU dropped a 7-6 decision to Kansas in the inaugural Buck O’Neil Classic Tuesday night.
The contest was scoreless until the fourth as Kansas scored on a sac fly after the runner moved to third on a passed ball. TSU would load the bases in the fifth but the inning ended on a double play.
The Jayhawks scored four runs in the bottom of the fifth to move ahead 5-0 but TSU countered with two runs in the sixth as CJ Castillo and Jeremy Gaines drew back-to-back walks and moved into scoring position on a wild pitch. Johnathon Thomas’ sac fly scored Castillo and a KU fielding error scored Gaines.
Michael Goudeau opened the seventh with a solo homer to draw within 5-3. Justin Cooper would single with one out and Gaines came up big with a two-run shot to knot the game at 5-all. Thomas would hit the go-ahead homer right after to move TSU on top 6-5.
Kansas would load the bases in the seventh and tied it on a passed ball but the Tigers avoided the go-ahead run as they threw the runner out at home. TSU had two runners on in the eighth but couldn’t capitalize while KU hit consecutive one out singles in the eighth which led to a sac fly for the go-ahead run.
CJ Castillo drew a leadoff walk in the ninth but TSU hit into a double play and a game-ending groundout.
Gaines led TSU with a 2-for-4 outing with two runs, two RBI and a walk. Tyrese Clayborne also went 2-for-4 while Thomas had two RBI. Four Tigers saw action on the mound as A.J. Winger dropped to 0-2 after pitching one inning on relief.
The series concludes at 3 p.m. tomorrow in Lawrence.
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