The Nevada Wolf Pack baseball team was concerned about its bullpen heading into the 2013 season.
One game did nothing to change that.
The Wolf Pack bullpen imploded Friday in an 11-4 loss to the Kansas Jayhawks to open the season at Mesa , Ariz. Three Pack relievers combined to give up seven runs on five hits, two walks and a hit batter in the eighth inning after entering the game with the score tied 4-4.
Wolf Pack starter Bradey Shipley had one bad inning in his six-inning stint. The junior allowed three runs in the second inning as the Pack fell behind 3-0.
Shipley, though, pitched well in his other five innings and left with the game tied 4-4 after six innings. The 2012 Western Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year allowed five hits and four runs and three walks while striking out six in six innings.
The Wolf Pack tied the game at 3-3 with three runs in the fourth inning off Kansas starter Frank Duncan (six innings, eight hits, four runs, two walks, five strikeouts).
Kewby Meyer and Brooks Klein opened the Pack fourth with singles, though Meyer was picked off second for the first out. Austin Byler coaxed a walk off Duncan and Brad Gerig then drove in Klein and Byler with a double. Lance Berringer followed with a single and Scott Kaplan brought home Gerig with another single as the Pack got five hits in the inning.
The Wolf Pack actually took a brief 4-3 lead with a run in the sixth off Duncan. Byler singled and went to second on a passed ball and eventually scored on another passed ball. Kaplan got his second hit of the game in the inning to load the bases.
Byler scored on a passed ball with Ryan Teel at the plate with the bases loaded and just one out. Teel, though, fouled out to left field and Kyle Hunt flied out to right as the Pack had to settle for just one run in the inning.
The Pack wasted one other scoring opportunity in the eighth. They didn't score in the inning when Teel lined out to center with two runners on base to end the threat.
Kansas broke the tie in the eighth against Pack relievers Adam Whitt, Colby Blueberg and Kody Gorden. Whitt, a freshman, and Blueberg, a sophomore, each faced just two hitters to open the inning. Whitt hit a batter and allowed a hit and Blueberg walked a hitter and allowed a hit. All four runners that Whitt and Blueberg put on base came around to score.
Gorden gave up three hits and a walk in the inning and allowed three runs, only two of which were earned because of a throwing error by Teel behind the plate.
The Wolf Pack offense went out in order in the first, third, fifth, seventh and ninth innings. Kansas relievers Tyler Watson and Robert Kahana combined to toss three shutout innings and didn't allow a hit over the seventh, eighth and ninth innings.
Jamison Rowe and Meyer, the first two hitters in the Pack order, were a combined 1-for-10 without a run or RBI. Kevin Kuntz and Jordan Dreiling, Kansas' first two hitters, were a combined 5-for-8 with a run and four RBI.
Berringer and Kaplan led the Pack with two hits each.
The two teams will continue their four-day, four-game series at Hohokam Stadium today at noon.