It’s a big, busy Valentine’s Day weekend for Kansas State, so we’re going to dive in head-first and get you prepared.
Fortsphere (okay, baseball)
It’s opening day! The BatCats are in the southiest part of South Texas this weekend for a four-game series against the Vaqueros of the University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley — the school at which Lon Kruger was head coach before coming home to replace Jack Hartman, although it was just known as Pan American back then.
This weekend’s games are at 7:00pm on Friday and Monday, and at 2:00pm on the weekend days. You can catch the action on the WAC Digital Network, which appears to be free; don’t sue us if we’re wrong on that. Otherwise, you can listen to John Kurtz and Christopher Brown on KMAN and kstatesports.com.
Last year, the teams played a three-game set at Tointon, and the Cats took two of three on the way to a forgettable 25-33 (8-16) campaign in the first season at the helm for Pete Hughes. UTRGV, meanwhile, went on to finish 34-21 (19-8 WAC), tying for the conference championship before bowing out in the WAC Tournament.
In today’s Sports Extra, an uncredited (!?) story previews the pitching staff, which Hughes thinks will be a lot better this year than last.
Naperville (Ill.) North wide receiver Matthew Maschmeier explains to Patrick McGavin of the Chicago Tribune why he took a preferred walk-on offer from K-State over a full ride at Illinois State.
Track & Field
It’s the last road trip before the Big 12 Indoor Championships, and the Cats will be splitting the squad. Most of the team will be in Ames — the site of those championships — for the Iowa State Classic, while a select few competitors will instead head to Fayetteville for the Tyson Invitational. The teams are itching to get back in action after losing last week’s trip to South Carolina due to the weather.
Riding a four-game winning streak, K-State (5-2) will try and keep rolling today. It’s going to be a challenge, however, as they’re hosting #23 Washington (7-2) at the Body First Tennis Center. Washington is well-rested, having taken last weekend off while the Wildcats were in Arizona for a pair of contests.
Elena Meadows at the Sturgis (Mich.) Journal has a neat story about a school whose colors are purple and white and whose teams have the Powercat as their logo. That school: Three Rivers High School in southwestern Michigan. Strangely, while Three Rivers is the hometown of former Bills tight end Pete Metzelaars and former White Sox pitcher Matt Thornton, neither of them actually attended Three Rivers High. It was also the hometown of famed magician Harry Blackstone, Jr.
There. We’ve saved you from the Wikipedia rabbit hole.