ABILENE, Texas — Kansas State starting pitcher Landon Busch tossed his first-career complete game to lead the Wildcats past Grand Canyon, 11-1, on Saturday morning in the first game of a day-night doubleheader at Crutcher Scott Field.
Busch, who had never pitched more than four innings in an outing before, struck out three and did not walk an Antelope batter.
The left-hander became the first K-State pitcher to register a complete game since Joe Flattery did it on March 22, 2013 against Bethune-Cookman.
“Coach (Josh Reynolds) has been working really hard with the guys on being efficient, and Busch was there,” K-State head coach Brad Hill said. “He and (catcher) Alex Bee were outstanding together. Busch got in a great rhythm.
“In the third inning, he did a great job when he had guys on first and second with no outs. They get the bunt down, and now guys are on second and third, but Busch goes on to not allow anybody to score. He was outstanding.”
Busch scattered eight hits with his 99 pitches, 74 of which were strikes. He faced the minimum in three innings while helping strand seven Grand Canyon runners on base. The one run Busch surrendered was on a groundout in the sixth inning.
While Busch was twirling a one-run complete game, the Wildcat offense provided plenty of support for the sophomore, including a six-run eighth inning. K-State had 11 hits, seven of which came in the seventh and eighth innings.
Sophomore Clayton Dalrymple paced K-State with a career-high three hits. Lance Miles, making his second-career start at second base, had a career-high four RBIs to go with his two hits — both doubles — and a walk.
K-State used 10 batters in the eighth, with five of them notching a base hit. Shane Conlon started the frame by drawing a walk before RJ Santigate drove in the K-State first baseman with a single to right.
Later in the frame, Bee and Miles each drove in two runs apiece with base hits. Miles used his second double of the day to score two runs. Pinch hitter Taylor Anderson also contributed in the inning with a sacrifice fly for his first RBI at K-State.
“Us putting up six runs late is what I really like — it crushed them,” Hill said. “They’re still hanging around and we’re putting up some zeros, and then you just crush them with a six-spot. That is what I like to see.”
K-State struck first in the third inning with a pair of RBIs on Miles’ first double of the afternoon that made it 2-0.
In the fourth, a leadoff single by Austin Fisher was followed by Max Brown’s first triple of the season to make it 3-0. Santigate answered Brown’s three-base hit with a sac fly to score Brown and give K-State a four-run lead.
Back-to-back, two-out hits by K-State, started by Dalrymple’s double to left-center, added to K-State’s lead in the seventh. Ross Kivett drove in Dalrymple with an RBI single to center, making it 5-1 Wildcats.
Eight of the nine starting position players for K-State reached base safely at least once. Bee, Miles and Dalrymple led the way by each reaching base three times.
K-State wrapped up its doubleheader on Saturday night against Missouri State, but the results were not available by press time.
MaVorhis leads K-State past Grand Canyon, 9-4
K-State tallied 14 hits and got a career day from starting pitcher Levi MaVorhis to defeat Grand Canyon, 9-4, on Friday at Crutcher Scott Field.
MaVorhis, making his third start of the season, posted a career-high eight strikeouts in 7 1/3 innings to pick up his first win of the year.
The right-hander scattered seven hits to allow three earned runs.
K-State had multi-hit efforts from Conlon, Kivett, Kyle Speer and Carter Yagi. Conlon led the way with three hits.
K-State scored three runs in the top of the first and single runs in the third and fourth innings, giving the Wildcats a 5-2 lead going into the fifth.
Grand Canyon scored two runs in the fifth on to hits and two K-State errors to get within one at 5-4 before MaVorhis started to settle down.
The Wildcats added insurance runs in the sixth, seventh and eighth innings, as K-State finished with a season-high five extra-base hits.