April 12, 2011
OMAHA, Neb. – Creighton’s Joey Bowen drew a bases-loaded walk on a full-count pitch in the bottom of the ninth to send the Bluejays to a 7-6 victory over Kansas State Tuesday afternoon in the final game played at the CU Sports Complex.
Creighton, which will play the remainder of its home schedule at TD Ameritrade Park, improved to 23-7. The Wildcats fell to 18-13 on the season with the loss.
Trailing 6-4 entering the ninth inning, K-State’s Wade Hinkle hit a two-run homer to tie the game at 6-6. Ross Kivett followed with a single up the middle and eventually moved to third with two outs, but Jake Brown was fanned by Kurt Spomer (2-3) on a full-count pitch to strand the go-ahead run.
Wildcat reliever Shawn Lewick (0-1) entered the game in the bottom of the ninth and immediately hit Nick Judkins with a pitch. The left-hander was replaced by Jake Doller, who surrendered a sacrifice bunt and then issued an intentional walk to put runners on first and second with one out.
Anthony Bemboom singled to shallow center field to load the bases. Doller fell behind 3-0 in the count to Bowen before throwing two strikes. But Doller’s sixth pitch of the at-bat missed, allowing Creighton to win on the walk-off free pass.
“We chased a lot of balls out of the zone today and had way too many strikeouts, and defensively we didn’t take outs when they were trying to give us outs,” head coach Brad Hill said.
Bemboom and Jordan Matkovicka paced Creighton offensively with two hits apiece. Mike Gerber had a two-run homer in the fifth inning that cut K-State’s early lead to 3-2.
Mike Kindel tallied two hits, including a RBI single in the fourth, to give K-State a 3-0 lead. Kindel also doubled, while Hinkle doubled and scored in the seventh before his homer in the ninth.
After going 0-for-2 with a strikeout and grounding into a double play, Nick Martini doubled in the sixth inning to extend his NCAA record streak of consecutive games reaching base to 91.
Gerber’s homer in the fifth and a run-scoring single by Bemboom in the sixth tied the game at 3-3. K-State regained the lead in the seventh when Hinkle doubled off the wall and moved to third on a sacrifice bunt. He scored when Alex Staehely misplayed Tanner Witt’s grounder.
Creighton took advantage of K-State miscues in its half of the inning to take the lead. With runners on first and second, Chance Ross put down a sacrifice bunt that Hinkle threw wildly past first down the right-field line, allowing two runs to score and Ross to go to third.
Staehely then walked, setting up a double-play opportunity for the Cats. Wildcat reliever Shane Conlon delivered a ground ball to Brown at second base, who flipped to Witt for the force at second, but Witt’s throw sailed into the Creighton dugout and the Bluejays took a 6-4 lead.
The loss spoiled a solid start by Justin Lindsey, whose only mistake was the homer to Gerber in the fifth. The right-hander allowed four runs with a walk and four strikeouts in five innings of work.
Kansas State hosts in-state rival Wichita State on Wednesday evening at Tointon Family Stadium. First pitch is at 6:30 p.m., and the game will be televised throughout the state of Kansas on Cox Cable Kansas 22 and in the Kansas City area on Metro Sports.
To purchase tickets for the contest against the Shockers, fans can log on to www.k-statesports.com/tickets, calling 1-800-221-CATS or visiting the K-State Athletic Ticket office inside Bramlage Coliseum.