Kansas State infielder Josh Nicoloff (27) reacts after a home run in a game on May. 6, at Tointon Family Stadium. Nicoloff executed a key squeeze-bunt in the bottom of the 11th inning on Friday to give the Wildcats a win over Texas Tech in the Big 12 Tournament, keeping their season alive. 

Kansas State needed something big to happen in extra innings against No. 2 seed Texas Tech Friday to pull out a win to keep its season alive.

Josh Nicoloff came through for the Wildcats with a squeeze bunt in the top of the 11th inning which scored Cole Johnson from third base to take a 6-5 lead. Dylan Phillips kept eighth-ranked Texas Tech scoreless in the bottom of the 11th to seal the 6-5 win to advance to the semifinals of the Big 12 championship at Globe Life Field.

Johnson received fortune from Texas Tech’s left fielder Easton Murrell who dropped a pop fly hit to left field which allowed Johnson to reach second base.

Kaelen Culpepper then successfully allowed Johnson to advance to third base with a sacrifice bunt. Nicoloff then executed a squeeze bunt that worked to perfection to score Johnson for the go-ahead run.

K-State (29-28, 8-16 Big 12) was in rally mode in the top of the ninth inning facing a 5-4 deficit with two outs and only one baserunner with Brady Day on first base.

Nick Goodwin singled to keep K-State alive, and then Johnson worked a walk to load the bases. Texas Tech’s relief pitcher Austin Becker threw a wild pitch, and Day took advantage and scored from third base to tie the game. K-State was unable to take the lead after Day scored on the wild pitch, but it was enough to keep the game alive.

The Wildcats got the early lead in the top of the second inning as Goodwin hit a solo home run to left field, and Justin Mitchell hit a double-RBI single to score Johnson and Culpepper.

The Red Raiders (37-20, 15-9 Big 12) responded with four runs — three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning —  to take a 4-3 lead.

Day tied the game for K-State with a RBI single to score Dominic Johnson who reached base with a double in the top of the seventh inning.

Texas Tech got its lead right back in the bottom half of the seventh inning with a RBI single for a 5-4 lead.

K-State had multiple opportunities for more runs in the game with a season-high of 14 runners left on base. Including leaving the bases loaded three times: in the second, ninth and 10th inning.

K-State now plays Oklahoma at 12:30 p.m. in the semifinals.

Because K-State lost its first game of the tournament to Texas Tech and Oklahoma has not yet lost a game in the tournament, K-State will need to defeat Oklahoma twice to advance to the Big 12 championship game. 

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