Wildcats Swept by No. 7 Oklahoma State

May 11, 2014

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K-State Athletics

MANHATTAN, Kan. – The K-State baseball team was swept by No. 7 Oklahoma State after the Cowboys defeated the Wildcats, 17-5, in a mercy-rule shortened game on Sunday at Tointon Family Stadium.

K-State (24-28, 4-17 Big 12) allowed runs in four of the first five innings, including three in the second and fourth and capped by nine in the fifth. The Cowboys (38-13, 16-5) used 17 hits and eight walks issued by the K-State pitching staff to score the 17 runs.

The Wildcats were outscored 31-9 over the three-game series.

It was the second straight weekend the Wildcats lost by a mercy rule after last Sunday’s 21-7 loss at No. 13 TCU. K-State has now lost 10 straight conference games, its longest such streak since 2012, and been swept in three straight series.

“The learning experience for us is seeing the number one team in the Big 12 and its ability to throw secondary pitches for strikes, particularly in counts where we were looking for a fastball, and our inability to do that same thing,” said K-State head coach Brad Hill. “Every time we needed to throw a breaking ball, we would bounce it or hang it and they would hit it hard. That left a lot of pressure on the fastball, and if that’s the only pitch you have, they are going to sit on that, too. [Oklahoma State is] the number one team in the Big 12, and there’s a reason why.”

Oklahoma State starting pitcher Tyler Nurdin limited the Wildcats to one run and two hits in his first five innings pitched to pick up his fourth win the season. The left-hander finished the game surrendering five runs on six hits in 5 2/3 innings after K-State scored four runs in the sixth.

K-State starting pitcher Nate Griep struck out two in a 1-2-3 first inning, but the Cowboys attacked the Wildcat right-hander with eight hits over the next three innings to score seven runs against him. Griep allowed three runs on four hits in the second, including two on a two-out single by Bryan Case, and in the third, an RBI single by Tanner Krietemeier capped three straight hits to start the frame.

Griep hit a batter to start the fourth, but after a failed bunt attempt resulted in a fielder’s choice and was followed by a fly out, the redshirt freshman was in line to escape the inning unscathed. Oklahoma State, however, used a wild pitch and a walk to set up Krietemeier’s second RBI single of the game that made it 5-1.

After Krietemeier’s run-scoring single, K-State brought in reliever Jordan Floyd, who labored through 1/3 of an inning, allowing both of his inherited runners to score.

Floyd started the nine-run top of the fifth, issuing two walks and a hit by pitch as well as a single to first four batters of the inning before being removed for Ethan Landon. The fellow freshman, entering the game with the bases loaded, allowed all three inherited runners to score in addition to his own five runs surrendered in 1/3 of an inning. Landon allowed five hits, including a two-run double, a three-run home run and a two-run home run.

Down 15 runs entering the bottom of the sixth, Mitch Meyer hit a two-run home run to help K-State score four runs. After Lance Miles drove in Max Brown with a single, Meyer drove a ball to center field for his third home run of the season and first since March 15 vs. Northern Colorado.

“I told them right away that I appreciated that their at-bats were at least competitive,” said Hill. “Guys stayed up there and fought to get runs. At least we didn’t just lie down. They did compete.”

Clayton Dalrymple, who went 1-for-2 with a walk, drove in Austin Fisher with a double in the sixth to make it 16-5.

Fisher led all Wildcats with two hits as K-State had seven hits in the game, five of which were recorded in the sixth inning.

K-State reliever Jon Roblez, who induced a double play to end the crooked fifth, allowed two hits and one run in his 2 2/3 innings pitched. The freshman walked two and did not strike out any batters.

Oklahoma State’s Blake Battenfield held K-State scoreless in his 1 1/3 innings of work.

The Cowboys’ Zach Fish had a game-high five RBI to go with his three hits. Gage Green also had three hits as Oklahoma State had six players register multi-hit efforts.

K-State, now eliminated for a spot in the Big 12 Championship tournament, will host Texas for the final series of the season. Game one of the three-game set against the Longhorns will be on Friday, May 16 at 6:30 pm.