Murray State was one out away from victory on two separate occasions Tuesday night at Memphis, but both times, the Tigers responded to extend the game and eventually defeat the Racers, 11-10 at FedEx Park in 12 innings.
Leading 8-5 in the bottom of the ninth, the Racers (25-27) gave up a three-run double to left center allowing Memphis (28-25) to tie the game at 8-8. All three runs were unearned as the inning was extended due to MSU’s fourth error of the contest earlier in the frame.
Then in the 12th, the Tigers were again down to one out when Tyler Webb delivered a two-run double to left field and Memphis was able to beat the throw to the plate to win the game in walk-off, dramatic fashion. The potential tying run was thrown out at home the previous at-bat thanks to a great throw from Ryan Perkins.
The Racers led for much of the contest after the early innings. Memphis was able to score two runs in the bottom of the first to take an early lead and led again at 3-2 after two complete, but a three-run third from MSU gave it the lead for the next six innings.
MSU tied the game in the top of the second on back-to-back home runs from Kipp Moore and Perkins. The homer was Moore’s 10th of the season and it was the 12th long ball for Perkins. In the third, Brandon Gutzler hit his 16th blast of the season, this one was a two-run shot and the Racers pushed out in front 4-3. Gutzler’s 16 home runs are tied for the second most in a single season in program history. Later in the third, MSU pushed the lead to 5-3 on an RBI double from Perkins.
After the two teams exchanged runs in the fourth, a Tyler Lawrence RBI double and a sacrifice fly RBI from Davis Sims put the Racers in the lead 8-4. The Tigers would get a solo homer in the seventh to cut the lead to 8-5 before the ninth inning heroics. Caleb Hicks was able to deliver the two-run double in the 12th that put the Racers back in the lead at 10-8.
Gutzler, Lawrence, Moore, Perkins and Jaron Robinson all went 2-for-5 in the loss while Reed Thompson was 2-for-4 at the dish with an RBI. Adam Bauer scored a pair of runs on the night and also reached base on three walks on the evening.
Caleb Arbeiter was saddled with the loss as he allowed the final two hits and the game-winning run in the 12th. The Racers used six pitchers on the night in relief of starter Jack Hranec. Hranec pitched five innings and allowed three earned runs while striking out five batters.
Tuesday was the final mid-week contest of the season for the Racers as they close the regular season at home beginning Thursday with a three-game series against UT Martin. First pitch is set for 6 p.m.