The Nebraska baseball team fell short against the Kansas State Wildcats 4-3 Tuesday night in Lincoln, Nebraska, at Hawks Field at Haymarket Park. The loss moves the Huskers to 16-18 on the seaspm. NU pitcher Matt Warren took the loss to move to 3-3 on the year. The Wildcats’ Will Brennan got the win in his first career start.
Nebraska’s defense was shaky to start off the game. A four-pitch walk and error by Huskers’ third basemen Luke Roskam helped Kansas State put men on second and third without recording a hit in the inning. Warren settled in however and didn’t allow a run to cross. In the bottom half of the inning, the Huskers went three-up, three-down with two strikeouts.
KSU opened up the scoring in the second inning after getting men on second and third once again. With two outs, pitcher Will Brennan singled home Jordan Maxson to give the Wildcats a 1-0 lead, but Jake Biller was thrown out at home by left fielder Mojo Hagge to end the inning.
Kansas State added a pair of runs in the third. A double by Cameron Thompson combined with an error by Huskers’ right fielder Keegan Watson scored Hanz Harker putting the Wildcats up 2-0. Then, Thompson crossed home plate when Drew Mount grounded out during the next at bat.
Down 3-0 in the third, Nebraska got its first base runner in the form of a Jaxon Hallmark walk. This started a rally that would plate two runs for the Huskers. After reaching second by steal, Hallmark scored on a single by left fielder Mojo Hagge. Later, an infield single by designated hitter Jesse Wilkening allowed catcher Gunner Hellstrom to reach home.
Kansas State increased its lead back to two in the top of the fourth. Thompson recorded his second RBI on the day by singling home Dylan Watts. The Wildcats took a 4-2 lead into the fifth as NU only got a man to first in the bottom of the fourth.
KSU’s bats were quiet in the top of the fifth, and Nebraska took advantage. Hagge’s second hit of the day and wild pitch got him to second base before he completed the trip around the bases courtesy of a Jesse Wilkening double. Heading to the sixth, NU trailed 4-3.
Starting in the sixth, the bats fell silent for both sides. Nebraska couldn’t get a man past first and the Wildcats failed to get any further than second from the sixth to eighth innings. During that stretch, no Husker got a hit. KSU only managed one hit over the same span as Watts hit a single in the sixth.
NU remained down one run as the game entered the ninth inning. NU relief pitcher Mike Waldron retired nine straight batters to keep the Huskers deficit at one entering the bottom of the ninth inning.
After retiring the first batter of the bottom half of the inning, Kansas State pitcher Alex Belch walked two batters to put the potential winning run a base with one out. Nebraska couldn’t move the runners any further, however, and the Wildcats came away with a 4-3 win.
The Huskers are back in action at Haymarket Park on Wednesday to take on in-state rival the University of Nebraska Omaha Mavericks. UNO fell to Creighton on Tuesday night 9-2, moving its record to 12-19 on the year.
This will be the first meeting between the Huskers and Mavericks this season. An earlier matchup was scheduled to take place April 3, at Werner Park, but the game was postponed due to weather.
Players to keep an eye on for UNO include junior infielder and right-handed pitcher Grant Suponchick. He is the team’s leader in batting average with a mark of .313 and produced 13 RBIs to this point in the season.
Junior outfielder Thomas DeBonville is also a threat for the Mavericks. He is hitting .309 this season and has a team high 34 hits that include three homeruns. Against Western Illinois last weekend, DeBonville went 3-5 at the plate while adding two runs, one RBI, a walk and three stolen bases in a one-game rain-shortened series.
UNL is 59-9 all time against UNO and won both matchups last season by scores of 3-1 and 13-2. Wednesday’s game is scheduled for a 6:35 p.m. start time. The game will be broadcast on BTN Plus.