K-State baseball will play Creighton tonight

Kansas State Wildcat sophomore Will Brennan jumps to slide into third base past the Mercer Bear’s third basemen. The Wildcats took the victory over the Bears on Sunday 13-6. (Olivia Bergmeier | Collegian Media Group)

The Kansas State baseball team will host the Creighton Bluejays on Tuesday with first pitch scheduled for 6:30 p.m.

Since losing their first three games to start the season in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, the Wildcats have won 10 of their last 12 to improve their overall record to 10-5.

K-State is coming off a weekend series where they beat Mercer University two games to one. Creighton also won two of their last three games against the University of Minnesota.

In the first game of the series versus Mercer, K-State scored 12 runs on 10 hits. The defense was a key factor behind sophomore starting pitcher Kasey Ford. Ford struck out a career-high 10 batters to keep the Mercer offense scoreless through five innings.

Junior outfielder Drew Mount hit two grand slams in back to back innings to help power K-State’s offense over Mercer on Friday afternoon.

On Saturday, Mercer’s offense scored fives runs, all with two outs in the fifth inning to go ahead of K-State 8-2. Three of Mercer’s pitchers combined to strike out 17 hitters.

A bright spot from Saturday’s loss was that Will Brennan tied his career-high in hits with four. Freshman Dylan Watts went 2-3; combined with Brennan, the two recorded the three extra-base hits that K-State had in this game.

“That’s Will every day,” head coach Brad Hill said to K-State Sports. “He comes to play every day. Nothing surprises me with Will.”

In the rubber match game, Brennan had his second four-hit day in a row, while sophomore Jared Marolf threw for a career-high 5.2 innings as K-State scored 13 runs in their win.

K-State’s lineup hit a season-high 19 hits scoring 11 runs.

The pitching staff for K-State allowed six runs to Mercer but got plenty of run support from its offense.

The Wildcats have won three straight weekend series at home inside Tointon Family Stadium.

“I’m pleased with the way we bounced back,” Hill said to K-State Sports. “We weren’t very good yesterday, they beat us up pretty good. A great response today and Marolf, honestly, is the story of the day, to be able to come in and stop them. He put up a lot of zeros for us and the offense got going.”

As a team, the Wildcats are batting .308 on the season and have a slugging percentage of .488. They have drawn 14 walks and hit 16 home runs.

Brennan, senior Jake Biller and sophomore Cameron Thompson have started all 15 games they have played in so far. Brennan leads the team with a .493 average at the plate.

The pitching staff gave up 31 hits in the last series against Mercer. The Mercer offense scored 20 runs off K-State pitchers, seven of those were unearned.

Ford has the most wins out of any starter on this year’s roster and has pitched the most innings with 24.2.

Both Marolf and freshman Jaxon Passino have one save each.

K-State will play their first of six games left to play inside Tointon Family Stadium before heading on the road. First pitch is at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday.

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