MaVorhis pitches Wildcats past rival Jayhawks

By Joel Jellison

Everything that could go right for Kansas State, did, on Friday.

Sophomore pitcher Levi MaVorhis was perfect through five innings — finishing with a three-hit shutout — to lead the Wildcats to a 10-0 rout of in-state rival Kansas at Tointon Family Stadium.

K-State gave the right-hander all the run support he would need in the first inning, as the Wildcats piled on five runs to open the game and cruised to the easy win in Game 1 of the three-game series against the Jayhawks.

It was the 17th shutout in the history of the Sunflower Showdown and first since a 2-0 win by the Wildcats in Manhattan two years ago. It was the most lopsided win since a 10-0 win by K-State in 1969.

MaVorhis spun a gem for the Wildcats (19-11), going all nine innings and allowing just five base runners — all in the last four innings — while striking out four. He needed just 96 pitches for the complete game.

“Third, fourth inning he started to really get in a groove and just popping strikes,” K-State coach Brad Hill said. “(The) changeup was really good. I think that was a big factor. (It) kept the hitters guessing a little bit, and it kind of nice to have a five-run lead in the second inning. That helps out a little bit.”

MaVorhis said he felt strong from the get-go, as soon as he realized he could locate his fastball on both sides of the plate, and throw it either way.

In the later innings, he was aided by a Kansas (18-11) team that seemed to swing at everything.

“It’s always easy when you pitch with a lead,” MaVorhis said. “Obviously, you don’t let up, but it’s OK, pound the zone, you don’t have to be perfect every pitch.

“My changeup was probably the pitch I most relied on. I could go to it if I had a 2-0 count to show them something different.”

K-State came out swinging in the opening frame, with Ross Kivett sending a single up the middle and RJ Santigate driving him home from third on a one-out knock for the first run of the game.

Tanner DeVinny smacked a three-run home run over the right-field fence with one out to put the Wildcats up four. DeVinny’s homer was the first by a K-State freshman since Jared King hit one in 2011.

Clayton Dalrymple drove in Mitch Meyer with a single to cap the five-run inning.

The Wildcats wouldn’t score again until Shane Conlon drove a ball over K-State’s 16-foot wall in right field, a rare feat that even impressed his coach. It was Conlon’s first home run this season.

“It doesn’t happen very often,” Hill said. “It was good it happened for Shane and hopefully that will get him going a little bit.”

The Wildcats got an RBI single from Carter Yagi in the fifth inning, and then Austin Fisher scored from third on a wild pitch in the sixth.

Taylor Anderson drew a bases-loaded hit-by-pitch to score one run in the eighth, and Blair DeBord singled to score another.

Dalrymple finished the game as the only K-State player with multiple hits, going 2 for 5.

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