BASEBALL: Ball State picks up walk-off win over Indiana Tech
Cardinals win after Baumet gets hit by pitch with bases loaded in ninth
In a midweek matchup versus Indiana Tech, Ball State came out victorious in an unusual way.
With the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth, shortstop T.J. Baumet was hit by a pitch from Warriors pitcher Daniel Puckett, bringing in the winning run.
Coach Alex Marconi said the win wasn't pretty, but it counts.
"I'll take it any way we can get it against anybody we can get it from," he said.
Ball State trailed 1-0 for the majority of the game, recording just two hits through seven innings before rallying in the eighth.
As the Cardinals came to bat, Marconi gambled by putting in sophomore Blake Beemer as a pinch hitter to lead off the inning.
With one swing, Beemer tied the game with a home run to right field, his first of the season.
"I wasn't thinking about hitting a home run," Beemer said. "I was just trying to get on base, get myself into scoring position, get driven in. [Puckett] hung a curveball and I was fortunate enough to hit it."
Marconi said he wasn't surprised by Beemer's bomb.
"That's why I put him in," Marconi said. "I knew he was going to hit a home run. He hadn't hit one all year and he was due, so I figured I'd wait until the eighth inning, put him in there and he'll hit a home run to tie [the game]."
Even though the outcome favored the Cardinals (8-23), the thought of losing the game lingered in Marconi's mind.
His team committed three errors and struck out eight times.
"When you're not hitting and you start making mistakes defensively, you're always thinking, ‘Hey, any pitch, any ball hit could put us down two [or] three runs," Marconi said.
Marconi said Puckett, who tossed 8 2/3 innings, was unlucky for the game to end the way it did.
"I feel bad for them because their [pitcher] threw really well," Marconi said. "They played a good game. It's not an easy way to lose a baseball game."