Apr. 28—Kansas State’s baseball team now has back-to-back wins over Missouri for the first time since 2004.
The Wildcats topped the Tigers, their former Big 12 Conference rival, 13-8, at Tointon Family Stadium Tuesday night.
“Good team win,” K-State head coach Pete Hughes said. “Loved the offense. Set the tone right away with five runs. I thought we played great with a lead. You always hear me say that you can figure out the character of your team when you’re up by five runs, and they did well.”
In their last meeting before Tuesday, K-State earned a 5-1 victory in a neutral-site affair last year in Corpus Christi, Texas.
With the Tigers entering with a 1-8 record in their last nine games, the Wildcats (24-16) wasted no time jumping out to an early lead, plating five runs in the bottom of the first.
Dylan Phillips, K-State’s starting pitcher, helped his own cause with an RBI double — aided by a bad decision from CJ Cepicky. Missouri’s starting left fielder, Cepicky misplayed the ball after it came off Phillips’ bat: He stepped forward initially, only to see the ball sail over his head and bounce off the wall, allowing Cameron Thompson to jog home for the game’s first run.
One batter later, the Wildcats’ lead quadrupled: Catcher Chris Ceballos homered down the left-field line to clear the bases with a three-run shot.
But the Wildcats weren’t done in the opening inning.
Immediately after Ceballos’ homer, Zach Kokoska singled. A double to right center from Terrence Spurlin brought home Kokoksa to extend the lead to 5-0.
The teams traded runs in the third: Missouri scored four, while K-State countered with three; it marked the only frame in which both teams scored multiple runs.
The Tigers only managed four more runs over the final six innings. Three came in the sixth, when the visitors tagged reliever Elijah Dale for a trio of runs (all earned).
The Tigers pushed one more run across the plate in the top of the ninth.
The problem was that they weren’t able to keep K-State’s offense in check.
After its three-run third inning, K-State put five more runs on the board, scoring two in the fourth and seventh frames and one run in the sixth.
Despite only going two innings, Phillips was credited with the victory, the first of his college career. The two innings pitched also marked his longest outing as a Wildcat pitcher.
K-State victimized Missouri starter Trae Robertson, who only lasted one inning, allowing five earned runs and only facing five batters.
Ceballos led the way at the plate for the Wildcats, going 3-for-4 with five RBIs. In addition to his first-inning homer, he had a pair of doubles and scored two runs.
K-State returns to the diamond Friday, remaining in non-conference action as it welcomes Texas Southern to town for a weekend series.
First pitch Friday is set for 6 p.m.
This story will be updated.
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