Creighton Pitching Shuts Down Cats, 5-1

OMAHA, Neb. Kansas State jumped out in front with a run in the first inning, but Creighton pitching stifled the Wildcats the rest of the evening as Creighton defeated K-State, 5-1, Wednesday evening at Rosenblatt Stadium.


With the loss, the Wildcats dropped to 21-8 and are now riding a three-game losing streak, their longest of the season. The Bluejays improved to 12-14 with the victory.


Kansas State could only manage five hits in the contest its lowest output of the season and was retired in order in six of its nine at-bats, while the last Wildcat were hitless the final three frames.


The four pitchers Creighton threw at Kansas State were suburb as starter Mike Nihsen (2-1) took the win after throwing 5.2 innings, allowing just one run on five hits with two walks and two strikeouts. The final three Bluejay pitchers Jeremy Hauer, Bob Lackovic and Jack VanLeur did not allow a hit in the final 3.1 innings.


Creighton was led at the plate by Carson Vitale, who was 3-for-3 with one RBI and two runs scored. Darin Ruf paced Creighton with two RBI.


Four of K-State’s five hits came from two players as Carter Jurica and Drew Biery were each 2-for-4, while Biery drove in the lone Wildcat RBI.


K-State senior Todd Vogel was effective in his predetermined two-inning start as he did not allow a hit with one walk and one strikeout. However, the next three K-State hurlers Kayvon Bahramzadeh, Ryan Daniel and Evan Marshall allowed at least one run.


Kansas State grabbed one run in the first when Biery came to the plate with the bases loaded with two outs and, on a 3-2 pitch, hit a ground ball that bounced off the third-base bag, allowing every runner to reach safely and scoring Jurica to put the Cats up 1-0. However, Nihsen was able to force Jordan Cruz to ground out to keep bases loaded,


The first seven batters in Creighton’s lineup were retired, including the first six by Vogel. Bahramzadeh entered the game in the third inning and retired the first batter he faced, but gave up a solo-home run to Vitale over the left-field wall and into a howling to tie the game at one apiece.


In the meantime, Nihsen retired the side in order the next three innings until consecutive two-out bunt single by Adam Muenster and Jurica in the top of the fifth. However, Nihsen forced Nick Martini to fly out to keep the game tied.


The Bluejays came right back and scored four runs over the next three innings to put the game away. In the bottom half of the inning, a leadoff walk by Daniel came around to score on a Nick Becker groundout to give Creighton a 2-1 lead.


In the sixth, Elliot Soto led the inning off with a triple before Ruf drove him in on a sacrifice fly to left field.


Following another 1-2-3 inning by K-State, the Bluejays put a dagger into the game with two runs in the seventh. Soto walked with the bases loaded to bring in one run, before Ruf hit a sacrifice fly to right.


K-State will continue to four-game week in the Cornhusker State with a three-game series at Nebraska. The series begins with a 6:05 p.m. first pitch on Friday at Hawks Field.