Kivett’s Two-Run Triple in Eighth Sends K-State to 3-2 Win
AUSTIN, Texas – Ross Kivett laced a two-out, two-run triple down the right-field line to give Kansas State a one-run lead and Jake Matthys tossed three scoreless innings as the Wildcats came back to defeat Texas, 3-2, Friday evening at UFCU Disch-Falk Field.
K-State improved to 33-14 on the year and 10-6 in Big 12 play as the Wildcats won in Austin for the first time since 2009 and for only the second time overall against the Longhorns in the last nine games. Texas fell to 23-21 overall and 5-14 in conference action.
With the Wildcats trailing 2-1, Jon Davis led off the eighth inning with a double into the left-center field gap against Texas starter Parker French. The Longhorns elected to bring in Travis Duke (4-1), who immediately struck out RJ Santigate.
Blair DeBord followed with a competitive at-bat as he walked on the ninth pitch he saw from Duke. The walk proved to be key as Kivett sprayed a 1-1 fastball into the right-field corner to give the Cats a 3-2 lead.
“Blair competed in his at-bat and, after fouling off a couple pitches, he gets a walk,” head coach Brad Hill said. “Ross got the big hit we were missing all night long. We were confused at the plate and didn’t take good swings, but give credit to French because he has been doing that to a lot of people.”
Matthys (7-0) struck out three batters in the eighth inning and worked around a two-out single while fanning two more in the ninth to pick up the victory. The right-hander registered a career-high five strikeouts as he tied Andy Replogle (1973) for the most wins by a freshman in Kansas State history.
“Jake did what he does,” Hill said. “They’re going to have to beat him swinging the bat. He came back and pumped in strikes even after the walk. His competitiveness and composure is pretty good.”
A product of Spring Lake Park, Minn., Matthys lowered his ERA to 1.27 in a team-high 23 appearances, racking up 29 strikeouts in 35.1 innings. The win also tied him for 10th place for single-season victories in school history.
Kivett’s triple was one of three for K-State in the game, which tied a season high. Shane Conlon went 2-for-3, while Santigate, who also had a triple, went 2-for-4. Mitch Meyer hit a sacrifice fly to score the game’s first run in the second inning and hit his fourth triple of the year in the fourth inning to tie Kivett for team-high honors.
K-State now has 26 triples this year to tie for fourth in school history, which are also the most in a season since the 1997 team had 30.
Wildcat starter Levi MaVorhis was solid in his five innings of work, allowing two runs on five hits with no walks and a career-best four strikeouts. He surrendered a two-out RBI single to Jeremy Montalbano in the fifth inning and gave up a single to Erich Weiss in the sixth, who eventually scored on a two-out single by Jacob Felts off Jared Moore.
The loss spoiled a solid start by French, who allowed only two runs on seven hits while working around four walks with two strikeouts.
Kansas State continues its three-game series at Texas with a 2 p.m., contest Saturday at UFCU Disch-Falk Field. The game can be heard in the Manhattan area on SportsRadio 1350 KMAN and online at both www.k-statesports.com and www.1350kman.com.
The game can also be seen on the Longhorn Network, which is available on Cox Communications Manhattan channel 272 and AT&T U-Verse Manhattan channel 609. Additional information about the Longhorn Network, as well as frequently asked questions, can be found at http://espn.go.com/longhornnetwork/faq#2a.
– k-statesports.com –