Nebraska Baseball wins back-and-forth battle over K-State
The Nebraska baseball team (16-23, 5-7 Big Ten) saw the lead change three different times in a Tuesday matchup where NU beat Kansas State (21-18) 8-6.
Jackson Brockett made his second start of the season for the Huskers and dealt a quick first inning. After a leadoff base hit, the freshman retired the next three batters, striking out the first.
The Big Red offense was aggressive from the jump. Cam Chick was hit by a pitch in the leadoff spot, and he stole second quickly after. Griffin Everitt was then walked and Nebraska pulled off a double steal to put both runners in scoring position. The aggression payed off and Max Anderson singled in the next at-bat, scoring both runners.
K-State tied things up in the top of the third inning with a pair of base hits with runners in scoring position, and in the next inning, after Brockett walked two batters, CJ Hood took the mound for NU. The freshman walked another to load the bases, and the Wildcats scored two runs on a fielder's choice and wild pitch to take the lead 4-2.
The Huskers responded quickly, breaking the game open in the bottom of the fifth inning with two RBI triples and a two-run home run from Max Anderson.
Mason Ornelas took over on the bump in the fifth and quickly walked a batter and gave up a two-run homer, but he then settled down enough to hold the 7-6 lead.
Gabe Swansen added another run in the sixth for the Big Red when he singled with a runner in scoring position, and that doubled the one-run lead.
Shay Schanaman made a quick cameo following Ornelas in the eighth inning and Braxton Bragg closed things in the ninth to give Nebraska its first back-to-back wins since the beginning of the month.
Breakout fourth inning
NU needed to put up a crooked number to break this game open, and after going down, it didn't take long. A leadoff hit-by-pitch, followed by a triple from Core Jackson was a quick start, and another triple from Cam Chick two at-bats later kept the momentum rolling. Garett Anglim then drove in a run with a ground out to the shortstop, and with one runner on, Max Anderson put the hammer down with a two-run shot. Five runs in the inning led the Huskers to a strong finish.
Crucial defensive saves
Something that doesn't go on the stat sheet are the runs that the infield saved from coming home. Efry Cervantes had multiple instances where he kept the runners from advancing, or even made a play on a ball that should have made it to the outfield. In the fourth inning, Cervantes made two strong defensive plays that coach both said probably saved three runs. One of those plays was a diving grab down the left field line where he dove to tag third base and force out the runner for the final out of the inning.
The Big Red are back in action on Wednesday at Haymarket Park against Omaha at 6:32 p.m.
The game can be streamed on B1G+ and heard on the Huskers Radio Network.