Kansas State defeated the Missouri baseball team 5-3 Friday night at Taylor Stadium.
The Wildcats entered their first Big 12 conference match tied for the longest winning streak in collegiate baseball, and advanced that streak to 16. Last weekend, Missouri kicked off conference play on the road sweeping Texas A&M in a three-game series.
“It’s exactly what I expected," said coach Tim Jamieson. "I thought (Kansas State) would be well coached, and I thought their pitchers would throw a lot of strikes.” The KSU team has made a reputation this season for filling the strike zone and controlling the field. “I thought they played good defense and they played with a lot of confidence. That was something that was very obvious to me. They were a very confident baseball team and were going to have to play hard tomorrow to win it.”
Both teams recorded 10 hits in nine innings. KSU’s Eli Rumler made the difference with two critical RBIs, one in the third and the other in the sixth. Brad Hutt (4-0) recorded the win for Kansas State.
MU junior Nathan Culp (5-2) filled in pitching for junior Max Scherzer, who normally opens Friday night games. Scherzer is out with bicep tendonitis, and Jamieson doesn’t expect him ready to play until Sunday at the earliest.
Even so, Jamieson said Culp played well in his 6.1 innings on the mound. He said the only avoidable pitching mistake came in the sixth inning when a double for KSU tied the game 3-3. Mizzou had previously held the lead since the third inning.
“I’m not one to get real pumped up about going out there and pitching,” Culp said of his second series opener this season. “I have to stay relaxed. That’s when I throw my best. I try not to get too jacked up about it.”
The series continues Saturday at 2 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m.