The BatCats finally have a series victory in Waco. After losing the rain-suspended Friday game 4-1 to the Baylor Bears (on Saturday early-afternoon), the Cats stormed back later in the afternoon and took game two 5-3, keyed by a road-high 15 hits. The game two victory was HC Brad Hill's 800th career victory, his 382nd at Kansas State.
The Saturday afternoon charge was led by Sr. Shane Conlon who went 3-4 with an RBI, and Fr. Sam Chadick who went 2-4 with an RBI. Overall, five Cats recorded multiple hits and every starter managed to find first base at least once. So. Nate Griep got the start on the mound, and pitched 5.2 innings, but left after allowing two runs that tied the game at 3-3. His replacement, Jr. Corey Fischer pitched the remaining 3.1 innings scoreless was was credited with the victory, putting him at 4-3 on the year.
Sunday's game didn't start so well, and the Cats faced an early 2-0 deficit after Jr. Brandon Erickson allowed two runs on four hits, and was pulled after only recording a single out in the game. Fr. Bryce Ward came in and gave the Cats a chance by holding the Bears at bay for six innings before finally allowing a run after his first out in the 7th, and Fr. Jackson Douglas prevented any more damage in the inning. So. Jordan Floyd pitched a scoreless 8th and became the pitcher of record for the game, putting him at 3-2 on the season. Jr. Bradon Courville got the save after allowing two hits but no runs in the 9th.
At the plate the BatCats couldn't really get much going until the 6th when So. Steve Serratore, replacing Conlon at first base when Conlon left the game after being hit in the head by a pitch in the top of the 1st inning**, knocked in Sr. Max Brown to cut the Baylor lead in half at 2-1. After a scoreless 7th, the Cats again struck in the 8th to tie the game at 3-3. The first run in the inning came after a fielder's-choice turned in to a error, and the second after a bases-loaded walk issued to Chadick. In the 9th the first run came of a sac-fly, but the second run came on another fielder's-choice-turned-error. The third and final run came on a beautiful bunt laid down by Chadick that popped right up the third-base line. Overall, the BatCats were led by Chadick and Serratore who both went 2-4, and Sr. Carter Yagi who went 1-1 but recorded two of the Cats six runs.
Again, this was the Cats first series victory over Baylor in Waco, going 0-9 since 1997. However, the Cats do boast a 5-2 record since beating Baylor in the 2013 Big 12 Tournament, winning the series in Manhattan last year 2-1.
Up next for the Wildcats is a trip up to almost-Canada on Tuesday and Wednesday to face the Golden Gophers of Minnesota. So, Wildcat00, we expect some great road trip reporting *wink,wink*. The Cats will return home on May 1st for a non-conference series with Arkansas State.
**Coach Hill reported in-game that Conlon was experiencing concussion-like symptoms after the blow to his head, and that further evaluation would be needed before knowing if he would be available again this week.