Kansas drops second game heartbreaker to West Virginia
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – In its second pitchers’ duel of the day, Kansas was defeated by West Virginia, 4-3, in 11 innings Saturday evening at Monongalia County Ballpark.
Due to a two-hour and 40-minute rain delay, Kansas (19-18, 4-10 Big 12) junior starting pitcher Ryan Zeferjahn’s day was cut short after completing six innings against the Mountaineers (24-13, 8-6 Big 12). On 83 pitches, the right-hander allowed only one run, accompanied by one walk and five strikeouts.
Following the delay, the Jayhawks sent redshirt-junior Nathan Barry to the hill. The left-hander pitched one and 2/3 innings, but allowed two runs to score before giving way to freshman right-hander Stone Parker to record the final out.
Down by two runs in the ninth inning, the Jayhawks rallied to tie the game and send it into extras. Senior center fielder Rudy Karre singled to left field, bringing in juniors James Cosentino and Benjamin Sems.
Redshirt-junior right-hander Blake Goldsberry entered the game to begin the ninth inning. After the rally, Goldsberry pitched into the 11th inning before conceding the game-winning run.
- Sophomore designated hitter Nolan Metcalf recorded two hits for the first time in his career.
- Junior shortstop Benjamin Sems contributed his 11th multi-hit performance of the season, including his sixth in the last nine games.
- Junior second baseman James Cosentino stole two bases for the second time in his career. Previously, he ripped two bags against Texas Southern on May 6, 2017.
- In his 10th nod of the year, junior starting pitcher Ryan Zeferjahn lowered his season ERA to 3.36–the lowest of his career through 10 games.
- Redshirt-junior relief pitcher Nathan Barry allowed two earned runs for the first time in conference play. In his seven and 1/3 previous Big 12 innings, he only allowed two runs to score.
Kansas head coach Ritch Price
On dropping two winnable doubleheader games…
“It’s devastating. The effort was there and we competed. We played against two really good starting pitchers. The guy who pitched game one against us is as good as advertised. That’s a first round draft pick, and that’s the best I’ve ever seen someone pitch in my entire 17-year tenure at KU. The great thing about Ryan Cyr is that he matched him zero-for-zero until the kid hit the home run in the bottom of the ninth.”
On how two heartbreaking losses impact the third game…
“You have to play every day in this great league. You have to be tough enough to flush tough losses. Players have to flush their 0-for-4 performances and walk into the ballpark the next day like they were 4-for-4. It’s a man’s conference. We could have won two great ones today, but we lost two devastating ones. Now we need to show some toughness and find a way to salvage the weekend.”
The Jayhawks and Mountaineers will finish the series on Sunday at 12 p.m. (CT) at Monongalia County Ballpark.