Jared King picked a great time for his first hit of NCAA regional play. King drove in two runs with a sixth inning double to break a 1-1 tie and give K-State the lead for good in a 7-1 win over Bryant.
The hit followed a curious decision by Bryant head coach Steve Owens to pull starting pitcher Craig Schlitter out of the game with one out and two runners on base. Schlitter had allowed just one run on four hits with six strikeouts through five and a third innings when King stepped up to the plate. Bryant’s John Healy allowed the go-ahead hit on a 2-2 pitch.
King already turned heads with a spectacular diving catch in the bottom of the fifth that robbed the Bulldogs of at least one run in a tie game.
K-State starter Joe Flattery gave the Wildcats a solid five innings while giving up just one run on seven hits. Nate Williams came on to preserve the lead in the sixth and seventh, and freshman phenom Jake Matthys shut the door.
The Wildcats will face the winner of the Arkansas-Bryant at 7 PM Sunday night at Tointon Family Stadium. Pregame coverage starts at 6:30 on Sports Radio 1350 KMAN.
K-State needs just one win, either Sunday or Monday night, to win the regional and advance to the first super regional in school history.
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