Cats Maul 15th-Ranked Bears in Series Finale

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From K-State Athletics

K-State catcher Chris Ceballos had four hits, including a home run, to go with Jordan Wicks’ quality start to take the series finale over No. 15 Baylor 10-3 Sunday afternoon at Baylor Ballpark.

The K-State (23-26, 7-11 Big 12) offense tallied 13 hits – a season high in Big 12 play – and scored eight of its 10 runs with two outs. Wicks pushed his record to 6-1 after allowing two earned runs on eight hits over his six innings of work.

“Really a good team, toughness day,” head coach Pete Hughes said. “On Sundays when you’ve got to salvage a series, it takes a mentally tough group to do that. It takes a mentally tough group to be productive with two outs. It takes a mentally tough pitcher to be productive when you don’t have your best stuff, and that’s what Wicks did. It was a good toughness day for our program, I thought we grew up a little.”

Wicks, a freshman left-hander, struck out three and issued a career-high five walks. Baylor (32-13, 14-6 Big 12) left runners on base in each of the first six innings. Wicks stranded 10 BU baserunners in his outing and limited the Bears’ offense to 1-for-11 with runners in scoring position.

Ceballos turned in the second four-hit game of his career and first in a conference game, ending the game 4-for-5 and his seventh home run of the season.

Five Wildcats had multi-hit games while four players drove in multiple runs as the Cats led 7-0 after three innings. Cameron Thompson roped a three-run double in the seventh to put K-State ahead 10-2 after Baylor scored two in the fourth.

Ceballos’ solo home off BU starter Jacob Ashkinos opened the scoring in the second. The homer sparked a string of four straight Wildcats to reach base. Jaxon Passino drove in Terrence Spurlin with a single through the left side to give K-State a 2-0 lead after an inning and a half.

Seven consecutive Wildcats reached safely in a five-run third – all coming with two outs. Zach Kokoska was hit by a pitch and was followed by a single by Ceballos. After Spurlin drew a walk, Caleb Littlejim, Passino and Blake Burrows all produced run-scoring singles off Ashkinos.

Burrows’ two-run single ended Ashkinos’ (2-3) day after 2 2/3 innings with seven earned runs on seven hits.

The Bears clawed away at their seven-run deficit with a pair of runs in the fourth. Nick Loftin singled with the bases loaded to bring in the first two BU runs, and the Cats led 7-2 after four full.

Thompson pushed the lead to 10-2 with his bases-clearing double with two outs in the top of the seventh. Ceballos led off the inning with his third hit, a single up the middle, before Littlejim and Dylan Phillips each drew walks.

A solo home run in the bottom of the ninth by Baylor catcher Shea Langeliers off K-State reliever Eric Torres capped the game’s scoring.

Torres tossed the final three innings to earn his first career save. The freshman lefty yielded two hits and struck out two.

Will Brennan, Burrows, Littlejim and Passino all registered two hits while Burrows, Passino and Littlejim each drove in a pair.

K-State hit .533 (8-for-15) with two outs and .471 (8-for-17) with runners on base. Baylor ended 1-for-11 with runners in scoring position and 3-for-11 with two outs.

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Mitch Fortner

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