Jayhawks' Offense Overpowers Western Illinois, 15-5 and 6-3
March 4, 2007
LAWRENCE, Kan. –
Junior Brock Simpson and sophomore Justin Ellrich each had a pair of hits, while Buck Afenir and Preston Land hit their second home runs of the day as the University of Kansas completed a doubleheader sweep of Western Illinois, 6-3, Sunday at Hoglund Ballpark. KU won the first game of the twinbill 15-5.<?xml:namespace prefix=”o” ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office”?>
The Jayhawks improve to 9-5 on the season, while the Leathernecks fall to 6-7.
After scoring 15 runs on 16 hits in the first game of the day, KU used a more balanced attack in the second game. Eight of the nine Jayhawk starters recorded hits in the nightcap, while six different players had extra base hits.
Following an unearned run in the top of the first, KU answered with a pair of runs in the bottom of the inning. With one out, freshman Robby Price tripled and scored on junior John Allman’s double down the right field line. Allman, who went 1-for-4 in the game, extended his hitting streak to eight straight games.
He scored on Morrison’s RBI-single to give the Jayhawks a 2-1 lead.
KU extended the lead in the third inning when Morrison scored on Ryne Price’s RBI triple with two outs. Simpson followed with an RBI single to right to drive in his third run of the day. In the twinbill, the KU right fielder was 4-for-6 with three runs scored and three RBIs.
Afenir and Land hit solo homers in the fifth and sixth to give sophomore Nick Czyz all the run support he would need. The 6-foot lefty worked five innings, allowing three unearned runs on three hits. He walked one and struck out four.
KU’s bullpen duo of junior Andres Esquibel and Paul Smyth held WIU scoreless on two hits over the final four innings.
The Jayhawks’ offense unloaded on the Leathernecks in the first game of the doubleheader. Morrison led the way, going 4-for-5 with three runs scored and two RBIs. He was a triple shy of hitting for the cycle, collecting two doubles, a single and a home run – his second of the year.
Taking a 2-1 lead into the fourth, KU busted the game open with Afenir’s first career grand slam to left field. The Jayhawks’ catcher went 2-for-3 in the game and was 3-for-5 on the day.
Simpson went 2-for-2 with a pair of triples. He became the first KU player to have two triples in a game since John Nelson accomplished the feat on Feb. 17, 2001 against Northern Iowa.
The Jayhawks will play host to Tabor College on Tuesday afternoon at Hoglund Ballpark. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m.