K-State baseball slides into second weekend of season

Then-senior catcher Tyler Wolfe slides into second base during the baseball game between the University of Texas and K-State on April 8, 2016, at Tointon Family Stadium. (File Photo by George Walker | The Collegian)

The Kansas State baseball team will put its best start since 2011 on the line this weekend when they play four games in South Carolina, starting Thursday.

They’ll begin the trip with a matchup against the South Carolina Gamecocks, with the first pitch set for 3 p.m. CST on Thursday.

South Carolina is 3-1 this season and ranked fourth in the nation in the D1Baseball.com National Poll. This is the first ever meeting between these two teams.

The Wildcats have lost 14 straight games against ranked opponents. They last defeated a ranked opponent on April 17, 2015 against No. 19 Texas Tech.

After the Thursday game, K-State will take on St. John’s, who is 4-0 this season, on Friday at 1 p.m. They are coming off a win over the defending national champions, Coastal Carolina, and have a plus-30 run differential in the first handful of games this season. K-State leads the all-time series with St. John’s 2-0, with the last matchup taking place back in 2007.

The Wildcats will play two games against Liberty with the first game at 1 p.m. on Saturday and the second at 10 a.m. Sunday.

Liberty is 2-1 this season and they were picked third in the Big South’s preseason poll. These two teams have met once in their history, which was a 6-4 K-State win back in 1989.

The Wildcats come into this weekend with wins over Pittsburgh, Delaware and Ohio State last week in Florida at the Sunshine State Classic.

Senior outfielder Quinten Crandall has a 12-game on-base streak, continuing from last season.

The pitching staff was strong last weekend against Delaware and Pittsburgh as they struck out 21 batters.

K-State will have its home opener March 3 when they host Eastern Illinois for a three-game series in Manhattan.