West Virginia arrived at O’Brate Stadium on Sunday with a chance to sweep No. 18 Oklahoma State. Not only that, but with a win and a little help elsewhere, the Mountaineers would have a chance to slide into first place in the Big 12 Conference standings.

The Mountaineers (25-11, 5-4 Big 12) appeared on their way to a sweep late in the game, but OK State had other ideas.

Oklahoma State (24-13, 8-7 Big 12) erupted for six runs in the bottom of the eighth inning, erasing a one-run deficit and turning it into a five-run lead. West Virginia takes the series but was forced to keep its brooms in the closet, falling by a final score of 11-6.

WVU and OK State entered the eighth inning tied at five runs apiece.

Dayne Leonard put the Mountaineers in front with an RBI double that sailed over the center fielder’s head. It was WVU’s third run over the last two innings, and appeared to give the Mountaineers a lot of momentum.

The Cowboys snatched the momentum and the lead back in the bottom of the frame.

Oklahoma State sent 12 hitters to the plate in the eighth. The Cowboys scored six runs on six hits and two walks, and forced the Mountaineers to use four different pitchers in the inning. Five Pokes hitters drove in runs in the frame, and when the dust settled, the nationally-ranked Cowboys had an 11-6 lead.

Despite the loss, West Virginia claimed its fourth series victory over Oklahoma State, and the third in Stillwater. Had WVU won on Sunday, it would’ve secured the program’s first sweep of a conference foe on the road since March 20-22, 2009, when West Virginia took all three games in a series against UConn.

The Mountaineers got the scoring started with a three-run first inning. Caleb McNeely continued his hot streak with an RBI single. Freshman Ellis Garcia later doubled to left field with two outs to drive in two runs. West Virginia led 3-0 early. McNeely has now recorded at least one hit in 11 of his last 12 games.

Oklahoma State made up the deficit on one swing of the bat in the bottom of the second. A three-run home run by Marcus Brown started a string of power strokes by Cowboys hitters.

OSU hit a pair of solo home runs in the third, one aided heavily by the wind blowing out to right field. With those power swings, the Cowboys led 5-3.

Oklahoma State led by that margin through the end of the sixth inning, in part, because West Virginia consistently threatened to score but came up empty. The Mountaineers left the bases loaded in the second and third innings, and stranded runners in scoring position in the fifth and sixth.

WVU broke through in the seventh.

That’s when Grant Hussey blasted his eighth home run of the year. The solo shot pulled the Mountaineers back to within one. Later in the inning, Randy Mazey sent freshman Zack Ramppen up to pinch hit with two out and one on. Ramppen stroked a 2-2 pitch back up the middle for a game-tying single in just his seventh at-bat of the season.

WVU took the lead in the eighth, but could not hold on.

Freshman Robby Porco, making his third start of the season, was tagged for five runs on sixth hits in three innings of work. Maxx Yehhl and Keegan Allen pitched well in relief. David Hagaman pitched well in the seventh, but ran into trouble in the eighth.

Tevin Tucker led the charge at the plate for West Virginia. Tucker batted 4 for 5 with two runs and a double. He tallied seven hits in eight at-bats and scored five runs between Saturday and Sunday’s contests.

McNeely, Garcia, and Logan Sauve also had multi-hit performances. Landon Wallace extended his hitting streak to 10 games. West Virginia left 12 men on as a team.

The Mountaineers will complete their five-game road swing at PNC Park on Wednesday when they take on the Pitt Panthers. First pitch from the home of the Pittsburgh Pirates is scheduled for 6 p.m. ET.