Kansas State Earns School's First NCAA Berth

MANHATTAN, Kan. In the most historic season in the 109 years of Kansas State baseball, the Wildcats earned the school’s first NCAA Tournament bid, the Division I Tournament Selection Committee announced Monday morning. The Wildcats are the No. 2 seed at the Houston Regional, hosted by Rice at Reckling Park.

 

“It’s a great day for Kansas State baseball,” said head coach Brad Hill, the 2009 Big 12 Coach of the Year. “It’s also a great day for (former) coach Mike Clark. All the hard work that he did put us into this position. This is also for the players all the past players and all the players in the program right now.”

 

Rice is the No. 1 seed and the host team for the Houston Regional. Joining K-State and Rice at Reckling Park is No. 3 seed and A-10 Conference champion Xavier, as well as No. 4 seed Sam Houston State, which won the Southland Conference.

 

Rice (39-15), the Conference USA tournament champion, will be hosting its eighth regional in the past nine seasons. The Owls defeated Southern Miss on Sunday in the Conference USA Championship in Hattiesburg, Miss.

 

Xavier (38-19) joined Kansas State as one of five teams that earned its first regional bid on Monday. The Musketeers defeated Rhode Island on Saturday in the Atlantic 10 Tournament Championship for their first ever conference title.

 

Same Houston State (36-22) won the Southland Conference Tournament Championship for the third-straight season as it defeated Texas State on Friday. With the conference title, the Bearkats earned its sixth NCAA Regional bid in school history.

 

Kansas State was one of a record eight Big 12 schools that advanced to regional play. Other Big 12 schools that earned a bid into postseason play were Texas (No. 1 seed; Austin Regional), Texas A&M (No. 2 seed; Fort Worth Regional), Oklahoma State (No. 3 seed; Clemson Regional), Kansas (No. 3 seed; Chapel Hill Regional), Oklahoma (No. 1 seed; Norman Regional), Missouri (No. 2 seed; Oxford Regional) and Baylor (No. 3 seed; Baton Rouge Regional).

 

“It just talks about the strength of our conference and how great the conference is,” Hill commented on the Big 12 entries. “It’s a great day for our conference.”

 

The Wildcats teamed up with Kansas and Wichita State (No. 4 seed; Norman Regional) to mark the first time ever that all three Kansas schools advanced to postseason play.

 

“It’s also a great day for the state of Kansas. It’s amazing that all three teams were able to get in. There were a lot of firsts today and a lot of great things taking place. I’m just glad we were able to be a part of that.”

 

Tickets for the Houston (Rice) Regional are on sale online at RiceOwls.com, or through the Rice Athletic Ticket Office at Rice Stadium. All-session passes are available for $55. Tickets for single games will go on sale on Thursday, May 28. Tickets can be purchased in person or over the phone by calling (713) 522-OWLS during normal business hours from Tuesday through Thursday. Game times were not available at the time of this release.

 

 

NCAA HOUSTON REGIONAL

Friday, May 29

Game 1: No. 2 KANSAS STATE (41-16-1) vs. No. 3 Xavier (38-19), 2 p.m.

Game 2:  No. 1 Rice (39-15) vs. No. 4 Sam Houston State (36-22), 6 p.m.

 

Saturday, May 30

Game 3:  Game 1 Loser vs. Game 2 Loser

Game 4:  Game 1 Winner vs. Game 2 Winner

 

Sunday, May 31

Game 5:  Game 3 Winner vs. Game 4 Loser

Game 6:  Game 4 Winner vs. Game 5 Winner

 

Monday, June 1

Game 7:  Game 6 Winner vs. Game 6 Loser, TBA (if necessary)