RCW: Sport Spotlight 4.33 (Baseball)
— Kansas Baseball (@KUBaseball) May 6, 2018
A post shared by Kansas Baseball (@kubaseball) on May 5, 2018 at 1:42pm PDT
The aforementioned word is defined as a return to a former position or condition (as of success or prosperity), and nothing is more exciting than seeing that play out in the world of sports.
This past weekend, May 4-6, the Kansas baseball team executed that definition to perfection.
After suffering a 21-3 loss on Friday to West Virginia, the Jayhawks rode their starting pitching to win the final two games against the Mountaineers to claim the series.
“It shows the kind of character we have in our dugout,” head coach Ritch Price said following the series victory. “It would have been easy for us to shut it down after (Friday) for the entire weekend, but our guys kept grinding. (Sophomore) Ryan Zeferjahn got the momentum back in our dugout Saturday and (senior) Taylor Turski got the momentum going for us (Sunday).”
Zeferjahn put the team on his back with a seven-inning quality start with his only blemish coming in the second frame via a two-run home run by West Virginia. After that, he threw up five zeroes and ended his day with eight strikeouts – none more important than the back-to-back K’s to end the sixth.
The Mountaineers got runners to second and third with one out in the top of the sixth inning after a hit-by-pitch and a ground-rule double. At the time, KU led 5-2. Zeferjahn dug deep and fanned the next two batters he faced to send his team into the dugout with all the momentum.
On Sunday, Turski delivered his best outing of the season allowing just one run off five hits and a walk, striking out seven Mountaineer batters in the process. Turski gave Kanas another quality start it needed before turning it over to its bullpen to close out the final three innings.
“Their coach told me after Sunday’s game, ‘I don’t think I have ever seen a team give up 21 runs on Friday night and come back and win a series,'” Price said. “It speaks volumes to the quality of young men we have in this dugout.”
Those young men look to ride the wave of momentum they generated into the annual Dillons Sunflower Showdown, this year, to be played at Kansas State (May 11-13).