IOWA CITY, Iowa – Iowa scored six runs over the fourth and fifth innings and received great pitching performances from Matt Dermody and Nick Hibbing as the Hawkeyes topped Kansas State, 6-1, Friday afternoon at Duane Banks Field.
The loss snapped K-State’s six-game winning streak as the Wildcats fell to 24-11 on the year, while Iowa improved to 12-16.
K-State took a 1-0 lead on a Jared King double to left-center field in the third inning, but Iowa scored two runs in the fourth to take a one-run advantage.
In the fifth, Taylor Kaufman hit the first of three seeing-eye ground balls through the infield to plate two runs, while Ryan Rumpf and Jake Mangler hit ground balls that also found holes to complete the four-run frame.
In the meantime, Dermody (6-1) and Hibbing were nearly untouchable as the Wildcats could only scatter seven hits in the ballgame and struck out eight times. Dermody allowed just the King RBI double over six innings with two walks and five strikeouts. Hibbing, who earned his third save of the season, tossed three scoreless frames and allowed two hits with no walks and three strikeouts.
“It was just a bad game all the way around,” head coach Brad Hill said. “We didn’t pitch very good and didn’t hit very good. We didn’t compete the way we need to compete today. They beat us. They got aggressive, and they did some things we may not have been ready for, which is my fault. They competed a lot harder than we did today.
“We need to bounce back,” Hill said about the remainder of the weekend. “We’ve played a pretty good stretch of baseball. It’d be a shame to come up here and not play very well in this series. That wasn’t a good game. We need to play well tomorrow and get ourselves going back in the right direction.”
The Wildcats stranded nine base runners in the contest, six of which were in scoring position.
Kaufman led the Hawkeyes by going 3-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored. Rumpf, who made just this third appearance and second start of the year, was 2-for-3 with two RBI.
K-State starting pitcher Joe Flattery (2-3) suffered the loss as he surrendered four runs on four hits in 4.1 innings. The Iowa product cruised during the first three innings of his homecoming as he stranded a leadoff single at third base in the first before retiring the next 10 batters, including four via strikeouts.
Flattery ran into trouble in the fourth inning when a Trevor Kenyon double and a Kaufman single put runners on the corners with one out. Iowa catcher Keith Brand laid down a squeeze bunt to score the first run before Rumpf recorded his first hit of the year to make the score 2-1.
The Iowa fifth inning began with a Nick Day strikeout, but back-to-back walks spelled the end of Flattery’s day. Levi MaVorhis came in and recorded a fly out for the second out of the inning, but the right-hander surrendered four-straight singles to give the Hawkeyes their big lead.
Shane Conlon and RJ Santigate led the Wildcats offensively with two hits apiece. The one run scored by K-State was its fewest in a game since being shut out by Northern Colorado on March 12.
Kansas State continues its three-game series at Iowa with a 1:05 p.m., contest Saturday at Duane Banks Field. The game can be heard in the Manhattan area on SportsRadio 1350 KMAN as well as online at both www.k-statesports.com and www.1350kman.com.