Kansas clinches series over Baylor
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas split games on the final day of its first Big 12 series of the season and captured the series with its second win in game two of the doubleheader against the Lady Bears.
The Big 12 opening series victory is the first since the Jayhawks swept Oklahoma State on March 28-30, 2014.
Baylor 3, Kansas 2
A solid-pitching performance from senior Brynn Minor was not enough as Baylor captured game two 3-2 in the second game of the three-game series at Arrocha Ballpark.
The Lady Bears used a three-run second inning to capture the victory over the Jayhawks, and scored their first run on a Kansas error with two outs. Baylor netted the two additional runs on a single to center field.
The Jayhawks were unable to find success plating runners until the fifth inning.
Brittany Jackson tallied an infield single and advanced to second on a single to right field by Madison Sykes. A ball put in play by Morgyn Wynne advanced Jackson to third, and the speedy outfielder scored on a Becki Monaghan single to right field.
The lone other Kansas run came in the next inning, when senior Jennifer Marwitz hit her first career home run. The homer by Marwitz bounced off the top red line that decorates the outfield wall at Arrocha Ballpark.
Brynn Minor earned the start and pitched her fifth complete game of the season, while allowing no earned runs with one strikeout.
Kansas 7, Baylor 1
In the second and final game of their Big 12 opening series, the Jayhawks (13-21) captured the series with a 7-1 victory over Baylor.
Lexy Mills pitched a complete game and finished with seven strikeouts. Mills has seven games of seven-or-more strikeouts this season.
Baylor again earned the first run of the game in the first inning and Kansas responded with a run of its own in the bottom half of the inning.
Kansas earned its most successful inning of the game in the third, and tallied its first run on a wild pitch that plated Wynne from third.
Two batters later Marwitz hit a pop fly that dropped in the infield, scoring two more Kansas runners.
In the fifth inning, KU tallied another run on a Miradna Rodriguez double down the right field line that plated Macy Omli. Omli, who pinch ran for Sydnee Ramsey, reached third on back-to-back steals.
The Jayhawks tacked on two more runs in the sixth inning after two wild pitches allowed Sam Dellinger to reach third and score. A Monaghan line drive deflected off the Baylor pitcher, which allowed Wynne to score from third.
- The series victory over Baylor is the first Big 12 opening series win for the Jayhawks since March 28-30, 2014, when Kansas swept OSU.
- The series win over Baylor is the first since April 13-14, 2001. Kansas beat Baylor 6-2 (4/13) and 6-0 (4/14).
- Brynn Minor pitched her fifth complete game of the season against Baylor in game one of the doubleheader.
- Jennifer Marwitz hit her first career home run in a Kansas uniform.
- Kansas tallied 12 hits in the second game of the doubleheader against Baylor, the seventh time this season KU has had 10-or-more hits.
- Lexy Mills tallied seven strikeouts against Baylor and has seven games of seven-or-more strikeouts this season.
On what the series win over Baylor means …
Our goal this week was to focus on us. Baylor has always had a great program and they are down right now. I am proud of our team’s fight and their ability to stay the course. It doesn’t matter at this point who is down and who is not. It is about us and doing what we need to do to find ways to win. Our confidence at the plate this weekend helped us play better. If we are able to attack early, it will take pressure off our pitchers.
On needing to score runs early …
We need to start fast and that is what we are attempting to achieve every game. Unfortunately, we didn’t get that this series, but they didn’t quit. They have not quit all season and that has paid off in these close games this weekend. If it is one score an inning that is great. We are trying to make sure we don’t have any setbacks going forward with when we score. We play seven innings for a reason and every inning matters. I am proud that we are getting results from different players right now, and not one or two. Our defense has made key stops when we needed it. They earned a couple of double plays that were crucial. Proud of the way we are playing together as a team right now.
Kansas travels to Oklahoma for a four-game road swing which starts on Wednesday, April 3 against Tulsa. Following the single-game clash with the Golden Hurricane, the Jayhawks continue Big 12 play against Oklahoma State with a three-game series April 5-7 in Stillwater, Oklahoma.
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