⚾ Kansas Wins First Series in Blowout of South Dakota State, 13-1
MINNEAPOLIS – A career day by Nolan Metcalf and stellar pitching performances aided Kansas in its rout of South Dakota State, 13-1, on Sunday morning at U.S. Bank Stadium. The win secured the first series victory of the 2021 season for the Jayhawks.
Left-handed Eli Davis earned the start for Kansas during the rubber match and he didn’t disappoint. The southpaw pitched five innings, surrendering only one run and three hits while striking out seven batters and earning the win.
Nolan Metcalf led the offensive attack for the Jayhawks, going 4-for-4 with a career-high four RBIs, a home run and two runs scored. It was his second multi-hit game of the season and his second home run in as many days.
Kansas continued striking first in the series, as Casey Burnham came home on a balk in the bottom of the first to give the Jayhawks a one-run advantage.
A single by Metcalf and a double by Skyler Messinger in the bottom of the third inning brought three runs home and gave KU a comfortable 4-0 lead.
The Jackrabbits tallied a couple of hits to get their lone run of the day in the top of the fifth.
However, Kansas was quick to answer. In the bottom of the same inning, Metcalf launched his second home run of the season into left field to score Dylan Ditzenberger and Brett Vosik and give the Jayhawks a commanding 7-1 lead.
The Jayhawks added two more runs in the sixth inning on an RBI-double by Casey Burnham and a sacrifice fly by Ditzenberger.
Kansas continued its offensive assault in the bottom of the seventh. Three straight singles by Metcalf, Anthony Tulimero and Messinger brought one run across and a sacrifice fly by Tavian Josenberger brought a second run home. Another sacrifice fly by Ahuna gave Kansas its third run of the inning. Blaine Ray rounded out the scoring with a pinch-hit triple that gave the Jayhawks their 13th and final run.
Cole Larsen pitched four innings of scoreless relief, striking out nine batters and allowing only three hits. He earned his first career save and tied his career high with nine strikeouts.
Tulimero recorded his second multi-hit game of the season, going two-for-three with two runs and a walk. Messinger also tallied a multi-hit game, going two-for-three with a double, a walk and three RBI.
MOMENT OF THE GAME
B5 – After the Jackrabbits recorded a run, Nolan Metcalf stopped their momentum. The redshirt-junior launched a three-run home run to left field to give Kansas a commanding 7-1 lead that it would not relinquish.
STATS OF THE GAME
13 – The Jayhawks scored a season-high 13 runs on 13 hits with five extra base hits.
4 – Metcalf finished the day 4-for-4 at the plate with four RBIs, a home run and a run scored.
Kansas continues its road trek to start the season and are slated to play a four-game series at Florida Gulf Coast Feb. 26-28 in Fort Myers, Florida.