Clutch Hitting Lifts Cats to DH Sweep

TAMPA, Fla. Kansas State rallied twice late and got key hits down the stretch as the Wildcats swept a doubleheader from Ohio State Saturday afternoon, 5-4 and 5-2, at the Yankee Player Development Complex. The Wildcats moved to 6-1 on the year and won their third straight game in Tampa, while Ohio State dropped to 1-2.


Down 4-3 in the eighth inning of game one, J.J. Muse picked the perfect time for his first collegiate hit as he laced a single into left to plate Drew Biery, who was at second after a hit batsman and a sacrifice. Then with two outs, Brett Scott ripped a double into the left center gap to bring Muse all the way around from first to give the Cats the lead at 5-4. Daniel Edwards then closed the game with his third save this season in as many chances.


Then in the nightcap, K-State trailed for much of the game until a three-run seventh broke a 2-2 tie. Jordan Cruz led things off with a triple to right center before Byron Wiley ripped a single into right, breaking the tie and plating Cruz. Pinch hitter Tyler Ruch followed with a single and Eli Rumler sliced a double down the line in right to plate two more runs to give K-State the 5-2 edge.


Rumler previously had tied the game in the sixth inning with a solo homer to left, the first round-tripper of the season for the Wildcats.


K-State’s late-inning heroics in game one made a winner of reliever Tyler Ruch (1-0), who went 1.1 innings of work in relief of starter Ben Hornbeck. Ruch scattered two hits over the 1.1 shutout innings, while Edwards closed out the win with two strikeouts in 1.2 no-hit innings. Hornbeck gave up four runs on eight hits in 6.0 innings of work in his second start of the season.


Sophomore Todd Vogel (1-0) took the win in the second game after scattering three hits in 1.2 shutout innings. Starter Chase Bayuk was effective as he gave up two run on four hits with four walks and two strikeouts in 6.0 innings. Jason Linn came in to retire one batter in the eighth while Trevor Hurley picked up his second save of the season after striking out two in the ninth inning of game two.


Scott paced the seven-hit attack in game one as the junior went 2-for-4 with an RBI, while Biery also had two hits in the game. Nine different Wildcats recorded hits in game two, led by Daniel Dellasega’s three hits in four at-bats. Cruz and Rumler also posted multi-hit games in the nightcap, which saw the Wildcat offense explode for 13 hits.


The Wildcats conclude play in Tampa Sunday with a game against James Madison. First pitch is set for 12 p.m. CT at the Yankee Player Development Complex.