Things didn't start smoothly for OSU, with the Wildcats jumping to a 6-2 lead after three innings, chasing starting pitcher Mark Robinette. But the bullpen stabilized the game, with Alex Hackerott, Kenton Bevacqua and Vince Wheeland providing 6 2/3 innings of scoreless relief.
For a team that had already produced 11 come-from-behind wins, there was no sense of panic.
“We've been resilient and we know that,” said center fielder Saulyer Saxon. “It was a 6-2 game in the third. If you walked in the dugout, you couldn't tell if it was tied or what the score was. We just kept competing.
“We knew our time was going to come around. And eventually it did.”
The Cowboys got three runs in the fifth to make it 6-5, setting up the clinching rally in the eighth, just when it appeared they'd blown their opportunity.
After getting the tying run on to start the inning, Robbie Walton bunted into a double play, which could have been a rally killer.
Except Fish revived it.
“I was going up there just trying to get on base, honestly,” he said. “We really needed a rally to start right there. I was looking for a pitch up, something I could get ahold of and something I could get in a gap and get myself into scoring position to help us out.”
Instead, Fish got a fastball down and in, and drilled it over the wall in left-center.
Then Whaley doubled and pinch hitter Corey Hassel drew a walk. Jarrett Higgins, running for Whaley, scored easily when Saxon delivered an RBI single to left.
“It's a huge weekend for us, not just RPI or Big 12, but respect wise,” Fish said. “We want the nation to know we're a real team, we're a really good ballclub. And we're really starting to put it together right now.
“So I'm very excited with where we're going.”