SE: Big Fifth Inning Puts Wildcats Back on Track

The K-State baseball team (12-13, 0-3 Big 12) snapped a seven-game losing streak in a big way last night at Tointon Family Stadium with an exciting 11-3 win over the Omaha Mavericks (14-11, 5-1 Summit). 

“It felt so good,” said senior Clayton Dalrymple after the win. “We had that monkey on our back, so we just needed a big one. The pitching did great, the offense did great, so I feel like it was just a compilation of the past four one-run loss games all released and flushed out in one game. It was a really good feeling tonight to win a game like that.” 

While the Bat Cats have struggled to come away with big hits to win games recently as the team’s previous four losses all came by just one run, which was not the case last night as the Wildcats’ 11 runs marked the most since its last win, on March 16 over Stephen F. Austin (11-5). 

“It was good to see this offense open up tonight,” said K-State head coach Brad Hill. “Coach (Andy) Sawyers has been working hard with them. These guys are workers; it’s not for lack of trying or effort. Now we just need to string together some games like this.” 

The Wildcats held Omaha scoreless through the sixth inning thanks in large part to starting pitcher Logan Wiley. Wiley (2-1), a freshman, went on to allow three hits in his five scoreless innings with just one walk, which came in the fifth inning. The walk was erased by a double play and then he got a groundout to conclude his performance. 

“He keeps getting better each time out,” said Hill on Wiley’s performance. “It was good to see him finish. He finished that inning and we didn’t have to go get him. He got a big double-play and then really made a good pitch after that to finish off. That was good to see.” 

At the plate, K-State got on the board early by scoring two runs in the second and adding three more in the third. However, it was the fifth inning that really put the game out of reach. 

K-State’s five-run fifth inning was highlighted by junior Jake Wodtke, who hit his first career home run, a three-run shot. Wodtke finished the game with three hits and five RBI in his three at bats. 

Along with Wodtke, Dalrymple and redshirt junior Steve Serratore also recorded three hits each. 

“Getting the win, it’s a huge confidence booster; that’s a big key for us going forward,” said Wodtke with a grin after the game. “We just need to keep that same confidence that we had tonight and bring it into the next few games.” 

Next up for the Wildcats is a home matchup with Oral Roberts (13-10, 4-2 Summit) this afternoon at 4:05 p.m. 

“They’re good; they can swing it,” said Dalrymple. “They were in a regional last year and we weren’t, so we have a lot of respect for them. We know they’re a good midweek opponent.” 

Following tomorrow’s game against the Golden Eagles, the Wildcats will hit the road for Lubbock, Texas, to take on the Texas Tech Red Raiders. For the full K-State baseball schedule, please click here.  

“We have to make a quick turnaround, get the scouting report put together and do the best we can,” said Hill. “Oral Roberts is a good club. They’ve beaten plenty of Big 12 teams midweek, so it’s going to be a tough go tomorrow.” 

For a box score, highlights, photos and more from last night’s win, please click here.

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