SAN DIEGO -Baylor baseball fell 5-3 to UNC Wilmington on Sunday evening at the University of San Diego's Fowler Park. The Bears (5-4) lost a 3-2 lead in the ninth as the Seahawks (5-5) rallied for three runs to win.
Solid pitching on both sides carried on through the first four innings of the game, but Baylor struck first in the fifth inning. Starting with an error that let West Tunnell reach base and then a delayed steal of second, Grayson Porter drew a two-out walk. Mitch Price and Adam Toth followed with RBI singles to put the Bears ahead 2-0.
The Seahawks responded in the sixth with an RBI single by Robbie Thorburn and a sac fly RBI in the seventh from Luke Dunlap.
Then Darryn Sheppard led off the bottom half of the seventh with a towering home run off the left field foul pole to put Baylor back in front 3-2.
However, Josh Michalec (0-1) was unable to hold the lead after cruising through the last out of the seventh and the whole eighth inning. UNCW got to him in the ninth, which started with a leadoff walk to Gavin Stupienksi. A sac bunt later, Terence Connelly hit an RBI single, Casey Golden walked and Thorburn hit an RBI single. Kyle Ott came into relieve Michalec, and gave up a fielder's choice RBI to Ryan LaGrange to make it a 5-3 UNCW lead that Baylor was unable to overcome in the bottom of the ninth.
Despite a solid start, Brad Kuntz took a no-decision after throwing 5.2 innings while allowing a run on five hits and a walk with six strikeouts. Kelly Secrest (2-1) earned the win in relief after throwing 1.2 perfect innings.
*Baylor fell to 0-1 in the all-time series vs. UNC Wilmington as it was the teams' first-ever meeting.
*Baylor fell to 0-1 against current members of the Colonial Athletic Association as it was BU's first-ever meeting against a current team from the league.
*Brad Kuntz threw 5.2 innings while allowing one run with six strikeouts as he now has thrown 11.2 innings over his last two starts, giving up two runs (one earned) on seven hits and two walks with 13 strikeouts.
*Lawton Langford has reached base in 16 straight games dating back to last season.
*Darryn Sheppard has reached base in all nine games to start his collegiate career. He also hit his second career home run.
*Mitch Price has reached base in six straight games, has a four-game hitting streak and has had an RBI in each of the last four games. He went 2-for-4 with an RBI.
*Adam Toth extended his hitting streak to five games.
*Hayden Ross notched his first collegiate hit with a triple in the eighth inning.
STAT OF THE GAME
3 - The amount of runs allowed by Baylor in the ninth inning as it entered the frame with a 3-2 lead.
TWEET OF THE GAME
"I thought we competed hard and played pretty well - better than we had been playing. [UNCW] did a good job in the top half of the ninth getting some two-strike balls to go through. Have to give them credit." - BU head coach Steve Smith
Baylor is currently playing its second game of the day against San Diego. The Bears will then finish the weekend against California on Monday at 1 p.m. CT.