⚾ Cranford Hits for Cycle; Kansas Secures Friday Night Win Against UCF

LAWRENCE, Kan. – Collier Cranford hit for the first Kansas cycle since 2013 as the Jayhawks beat UCF 13-3 on Friday night at Hoglund Ballpark. Kansas has now won five-straight Friday games, including three in Big 12 play. Cranford finished 4-for-5 with a career high seven RBIs.

Kansas starter Reese Dutton threw seven strong innings and retired the final 11 batters he faced. Dutton earned his fifth consecutive win and recorded his fourth-straight quality start. Kodey Shojinaga also had four hits and Ben Hartl went 3-for-3, while John Nett extended his on-base streak to start the season to 20 games.

• Kansas (12-8, 4-3 Big 12) came out patient at the plate and drew three walks to load the bases. The Jayhawks took a 1-0 lead on an RBI infield single by Collier Cranford.
• UCF answered back in the top of the second inning. After a leadoff single by Andrew Williamson, Danny Neri sent a two-run homer out to right-center. That gave the Knights a 2-1 advantage.
• The Jayhawks went back on top in the third with a four-run inning. With runners on first and third, Cranford lined a two-run double into left field. Then, Michael Brooks brought home Cranford with a two-out RBI triple and Ben Hartl delivered a 2-out RBI single to score Brooks. KU led 5-2 at the end of three innings.
• Kansas added one run in both the fourth and fifth innings. In the fourth, Jake English singled up the middle to score Kodey Shojinaga. It was Shojinaga’s turn in the fifth to drive in a run with a ground-rule double to score Hartl and give Kansas a 7-2 advantage.
• Dutton retired 11-straight batters to end his night after inducing a double play for the first two outs in the fourth inning.
• The Jayhawks put up a six-run seventh inning to put the game out of reach. Two runs scored on a throwing error and then Cranford hit a grand slam to right field to cap off his cycle. The grand slam made it 13-2.
• UCF (13-6, 2-5 Big 12) scored one run in the top of the ninth inning on an RBI single to make it 13-3.

Win: Reese Dutton (5-1)
Final line: 7.0 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 0 BB, 2 SO
Loss: Ben Vespi (2-1)
Final line: 2.2 IP, 5 H, 5 R, 5 BB, 3 SO

Collier Cranford: Cranford hit for the first cycle by a Kansas player since Connor McKay vs. Kansas State on May 10, 2013. He finished the game 4-for-5 with a career-high seven RBIs. Cranford singled in the first, doubled in the third, tripled in the sixth and hit his grand slam in the seventh.


“It was awesome. The guys were way into that and I think everyone that was watching the game kind of saw it building where it was single, double, triple. He comes up there and gets to two strikes and we thought if he could pound one to right here and then sure enough he did. Happy for Collier. He’s a heck of a player and a heck of a teammate. It’s fun when those guys have those awesome accomplishments.” – Head Coach Dan Fitzgerald

“Yeah, I was walking up to my at-bat and I think some kid yelled and asked me if I was going to hit for the cycle and I ignored him. At that point, I was thinking about it. I really don’t have any words.” – Collier Cranford

• Cranford recorded the first cycle by a Jayhawk since Connor McKay vs. Kansas State on May 10, 2013. He finished with a career-high seven RBIs. Cranford collected his team-high ninth multi-hit game of the season.
• Kansas has won the opening game of the first three conference series for the second time as a member of the Big 12 and the first time since the 2000 season.
• Kansas turned double plays in three consecutive innings (second, third and fourth).
• Kansas has hit three grand slams this season.
• Dutton recorded his fifth consecutive win and his fourth-straight quality start.
• Nett has reached base safely in all 20 games this season. He also extended his hitting streak to nine games.
• Shojinaga matched his career high with four hits. He had a double, RBI and a run scored in the win.
• Hartl went 3-for-3 after entering the game in the third inning. Hartl had a double, RBI, two runs scored and a walk.
• English has six multi-walk games this season. He drew three walks on Friday night.

Kansas will play UCF in a doubleheader on Saturday beginning at 1 p.m. CT. The teams were originally supposed to play one game on Saturday and one on Sunday, but the change was made due to forecasted inclement weather on Sunday.

Fans can purchase tickets by contacting the Kansas ticket office at 785-864-3141 or by visiting the ticketing page here. Students receive free admission all season by presenting their KU student ID at the ticket booth.