OMAHA, Neb. -- The Omaha baseball team outlasted Fort Wayne 7-6 in a 13-inning marathon Friday afternoon at Seymour Smith Park. With the win, the Mavericks improve to 11-31 (8-12 Summit League), while the Mastodons drop to 7-35 (2-20).
Sophomore Nate Mallott's walkoff single scored pinch runner Andrew Hall in the bottom of the 13th, lifting Omaha to its first extra-innings victory of the season.
Sophomore Cal Hehnke (1-1) picked up his first win on the mound this year, throwing 4.2 innings of one-hit, shutout ball with no walks and two strikeouts. The loss went to Fort Wayne's Damian Helm, who surrendered the winning run alongside three hits and two walks over an inning of work.
Senior Sam Murphy threw 7.0 innings in his final home start, limiting the Mastodons to one run on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.
Sophomore Grant Suponchick finished 3-for-7 with two doubles for the day, while Mallott was 2-for-7. Junior Adam Caniglia went 2-for-4 with a pair of runs scored, and senior Sam Palensky was 2-for-4 with a run and two RBI. Junior Ryan Cate also had a 1-for-3 effort, scored once and drove in three more runs.
After three scoreless innings to start the game, Fort Wayne used Jackson Boyce's solo homer to right in the top of the fourth to take a 1-0 lead.
Omaha came back with a vengeance in the fifth, posting five runs on four hits and two Mastodon errors. Sophomore Jack Kalina led off with a double to right center and advanced to third on a fielding miscue on a sacrifice bunt by Caniglia. Palensky then singled through the left side to drive in Kalina, knotting it at 1-1. Another fielding error on a Cole Thibodeau sacrifice bunt loaded the bases, and Cate promptly cleared them with a three-run double to right center that pushed it to 4-1. After Fort Wayne got the next two outs, Parker Smejkal came up with an RBI single to right that scored Cate, making it 5-1.
The Mavericks tallied another run in the sixth, as Caniglia got on with a two-out triple to the right field corner before coming in on a Palensky RBI single to short that extended the lead to 6-1.
Fort Wayne made it a one-run ballgame at 6-5 in the eighth, however, scoring four runs on three hits. A walk and two singles loaded the bases for the Mastodons, after which Zak Kellogg was hit by a pitch to drive in Jake Weber. Mike Snyder added a two-run double to left to plate Jacob Dickson and Brandon Yoho, and a wild pitch allowed Kellogg to cross for the final run of the inning.
The Mastodons then tied in the top of the ninth, starting the inning with consecutive singles to left by Weber and Dylan Wilbert put runners on the corners. Dickson then reached on a fielder's choice, which allowed Weber to score for a 6-6 lock.
Omaha, which stranded 18 runners on the day, left two men on in both the ninth and 10th frames and one on in both the 11th and 12th. Finally, in the 13th, Suponchick led off with a double down the left field line, followed by a bunt single from Ethen and an intentional walk of Smejkal to load the bases with no outs. Mallott then delivered the final blow, as his RBI single through the left side drove in Hall and lifted Omaha to the 7-6 walkoff win.
Fort Wayne was led by multi-hit efforts from Boyce (2-for-5, one run, one RBI), Weber (2-for-5, two runs), Dickson (2-for-6, one run, one RBI) and Snyder (2-for-6, two RBI).
Omaha and Fort Wayne continue their series on Saturday, May 6, with first pitch at 2 p.m. at Seymour Smith Park. A link to live stats will be available on OMavs.com.