*From Troy Media Relations*
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – Western Kentucky rallied past Troy, 7-6, for the second straight day as Blake Crabtree hit a walk-off home run to lead off the bottom of the 10th inning; the Hilltoppers sent the game to extra innings with two runs in the ninth.
Crabtree, who committed two critical errors in a five-run third inning by the Trojans, took the second pitch saw in the 10th over the wall in left field for the HIlltoppers’ (20-16, 10-5) third home run of the game.
A one-out walk and double started the WKU rally in the ninth. Troy intentionally walked Ryan Huck, the Sun Belt’s leading home run hitter, and Regan Flaherty pulled Hilltoppers within one, 6-5, with a sac fly. Devin Kelly hit a 0-1 pitch into left field to tie the game at 6-all.
The Trojans (24-11, 8-7) had a prime opportunity to score some insurance runs in the top of the ninth inning after Ali Knowles led off the frame with a double, Brandon Brown was hit by a pitch and Danny Collins was intentionally walked. Ian Thompkins got out of the jam with a fly out and a strikeout.
Huck put the Hilltoppers on the board with a two-out homer in the bottom of the first inning, his 11th of the season.
Matthew Howard tied the game in the second with a double that scored Trae Sanots. The Trojans took advantage of three WKU errors and four hits in the third to build a 6-1 lead.
Logan Pierce extended the nation’s longest streak of successfully reaching base to 40 straight games with a two-run single and three batters later Josh McDorman hit a three-run home run, his third of the season.
The Hilltoppers went to their bullpen in the fifth inning and the Trojans managed just one base hit – Knowles’ ninth-inning double – after the third inning. Justin Hageman (1-0) was credited with the win after pitching the 10th inning for WKU.
Jordan Cessna began the WKU comeback with a solo homer to lead off the third and Trevor Lowe drove home Crabtree, who doubled, in the fifth to close the gap to 6-3. Huck hit a sac fly in the seventh after back-to-back singles by Cessna and Lowe.
The bottom three of the WKU lineup – Crabtre, Cessna and Lowe – combined to go 6-for-12 with four runs scored and three RBIs.
Howard, who was the lone Trojan with multiple hits in the game, took the loss on the mound after he was charged with three runs on three hits in two innings.
The Trojans continue their stretch of 10 games in 13 games when they open a six-game homestand on Tuesday. Troy will play a pair of midweek games against Alabama A&M on Tuesday and Wednesday before hosting UALR over the weekend.
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