Huskers take down Wildcats 11-1
Nebraska used a six-run first inning to take down Kansas State 11-1 on Tuesday night.
NU (13-10) sophomore pitcher Matt Waldron (2-2) had one of his best outings of the season, as he recorded two strikeouts and didn’t allow a hit through three innings. Despite not allowing a hit, head coach Darin Erstad still expects more from his former ace.
“He was fine, other than after we scored six, he walks the first batter in the second,” Erstad said. “That just can’t happen, that’s just a lack of focus. It was preset that he was going to pitch three innings, so we could have him on the weekend, but yeah he’s in a good place.”
Meanwhile, the Huskers took advantage of some mistakes from KSU freshman pitcher Caleb Littlejim’s (1-1, 12.27 ERA). Littlejim walked the first three batters of the game and then hit Nebraska DH Scott Schreiber to give Nebraska a 1-0 lead. From there, the Huskers got back-to-back RBI singles from senior first baseman Ben Miller and junior outfielder Luis Alvarado. Finally, NU scored two more runs with a double from senior infielder Jake Schleppenbach.
“Schleppenbach had a huge two-out base-clearing double,” Erstad said. “It was huge getting those extra three runs to help set the tone.”
The Husker offense was dynamic as they tallied 11 runs on 11 hits by nine hitters. Nebraska freshman utility player Luke Roskam hit his first home run of his career in the bottom of the eighth. Roskam hit for Miller, and it was the first home run by a Nebraska pinch hitter since Apr. 17, 2013.
“Those are my Minnesota boys,” sophomore shortstop Angelo Altavilla said. “I’m always happy when they do it, but it’s awesome to see those guys come off the bench. They’ve been working so hard and I couldn’t be happier for them”
Tuesday night was the fourth time this season that the Huskers have put together double-digit runs and double-digit hits. The Huskers appear to have hit their stride as they have now won eight of their last 10 games. NU has outscored opponents 66-to-27 over that period.
The Huskers will travel on the road this weekend to open up Big Ten play at Indiana. Friday’s series opener against the Hoosiers will start at 6:35 p.m. CST. The starters for this weekend’s series have not been announced yet.
“We couldn’t be more ready,” said Altavilla. “We are so excited to get out there to win games and compete.”