K-State baseball knocks off Nebraska in 5-0 shutout

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The Kansas State baseball team beat the Nebraska Cornhuskers in the return game of an in-season home-and-home by a score of 5-0 in Lincoln, Nebraska Tuesday night.

The win is K-State’s second straight and fourth in the last five games, including a pair of wins over number-14 Texas in the previous series. The Wildcats dropped the home part of the Nebraska series in a 7-0 loss earlier in the month.

Junior Cameron Thompson hit a home run in the third inning to put K-State up 3-0, it was his second home run in consecutive games.

The Wildcats’ first runs of the game came in the first inning, though. Junior Will Brennan knocked a one-out double down the third-base line. He moved to third on a groundout by the next batter.

With two outs in the opening frame, sophomore Zach Kokoska singled to score Brennan from third. Kokoska scored from first on a double into right field by junior Chris Ceballos.

K-State’s starting pitcher, junior Caleb Littlejim, pitched five scoreless innings, giving up just four hits and dealing two strikeouts. He pitched his way out of trouble a couple of times and issued five free passes in the form of four walks and a hit batter.

Littlejim was pulled off the mound and moved to the designated hitter position after walking the first batter of the inning.

He was replaced by freshman southpaw Eric Torres, who contributed three innings and struck out six batters, those were both career highs for Torres. He allowed just one hit.

The Wildcats brought in an insurance run in the top of the eighth when Kokoska scored after taking a no-out walk. He moved to second on a wild pitch, made it to third on a sacrifice bunt by Ceballos and finally scored on a two-out single by sophomore first baseman Terrence Spurlin.

Brennan hit a line drive into the left-field gap in the top of the ninth that he stretched into a one-out triple. The next batter, senior Thomas Hughes, beat out an infield single to score Brennan.

Brennan then moved from center field to the mound. He pitched 40.1 innings this season prior to taking the mound. After walking the first batter of the ninth, he struck out one and induced a pair of outs on the basepaths to seal the win.

K-State moved to 17-21 on the year with the win and dropped the Cornhuskers to 20-11. Their next action will be a Thursday, Friday and Saturday series against 22nd ranked TCU. That series will be on ESPN3 and can also be heard on the K-State Radio Network.

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