PAPILLION, Neb. – K-State surrendered a pair of unanswered runs in the final two innings, including the game-deciding run on a two-out RBI single by Omaha’s Alex Schultz in the bottom of the 10th inning, to give the Wildcats a 6-5 loss to the Mavericks on Tuesday at Werner Park.
Jake Matthys surrendered a leadoff home run to Clayton Taylor in the bottom of the ninth inning that tied the game at 5-5, and in the 10th, after retiring the first two batters he faced, the right-hander walked Cole Gruber. Schultz followed by delivering an RBI single to the left-center field gap for the walk-off win by Omaha (13-9, 2-0 The Summit League).
The Wildcats (17-11, 1-2 Big 12) tallied 14 hits offensively, but they also stranded 14 runners, including 11 left on in the fifth through ninth innings. K-State had five errors, two of which were on catcher’s interference.
“We just didn’t come out prepared,” said K-State head coach Brad Hill. “We made so many mistakes, such as the little things like missing signs and not running when we were supposed to run. We had a few key hits late, but there were not many good things about tonight. We got what we deserved.”
After falling behind 1-0 in the third, the Wildcats grabbed the lead with a two-run fifth. Ross Kivett drove in a run with a groundout to tie the game, and Shane Conlon used one of his team-high four hits in the game to drive in Clayton Dalrymple and make it 2-1 K-State.
The Wildcats added to their lead in the sixth and seventh innings. Blair DeBord hit an RBI double in the sixth to score Mitch Meyer, and in the seventh, DeBord plated pinch runner Taylor Anderson with a single to the right-center field gap to give the Wildcats a 4-1 advantage.
K-State ended the top of the seventh with the bases loaded, however, and in the bottom half of the frame, Omaha tied it up at 4-4 with three runs. K-State reliever Jordan Floyd walked Schultz to start the frame and issued a single to Brett Bass to put runners on first and second. Floyd’s last batter faced, Caleb Palensky, then hit a fly ball to right field, which was lost in the lights by Meyer and allowed Palensky to reach on a double and score Schultz.
Ethan Landon relieved Floyd, but after inducing a bunt groundout for the inning’s second out, Landon surrendered a double to the right-center field gap that scored two runs and tied the game at 4-4.
In the top of the ninth, Dalrymple drilled a two-out single to center field to score Anderson and return the lead back to K-State, 5-4. The single was Dalrymple’s only hit of the game.
Seven Wildcats had at least one hit, including a game-high four by Conlon. DeBord went 3-for-4 with two RBI, and Meyer and Austin Fisher had two hits each.
Kivett’s 13-game hitting streak and 25-game on-base streak came to an end after he went 0-for-6. Both of the streaks were career-highs.
K-State starting pitcher Colton Kalmus threw two shutout innings in a scheduled short outing. The right-hander allowed one hit and two walks.
Jake Fromson tossed two perfect innings out of the K-State bullpen, his first outing since March 21 against Oklahoma.
Omaha’s Cole Volkers threw a 1-2-3 top half of the 10th to help him earn his second win of the year.
The Wildcats head home for a three-game series against Kansas, their first conference series at Tointon Family Stadium this season. First pitch for game one of the Sunflower Showdown series is at 6:30 pm on Friday, April 4.