Sowers Strikes Out 12 But Kansas Outlasts Vanderbilt,
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Vanderbilt starter Jeremy Sowers
struck out 12 batters but was touched up for three runs
in the fifth inning as No. 17 Kansas rallied past the
Commodores, 4-2, Sunday, March 2 at Hawkins Field. The
Jayhawks improve to 13-4 on the season. Vanderbilt drops
to 6-5 after losing two of three games in the Music
Trailing 2-1 heading into the fifth inning, Kansas'
Ryan Baty tied the game with a RBI double into left-center
field to plate Jason Appuhn who reached base with a
leadoff walk. Kevin Wheeler gave the Jayhawks a 3-2
lead when he followed with a RBI single to right-center
field that scored Baty. After a two-out single by Casey
Spanish put runners on first and second, Travis Metcalf
blooped a single to left field that scored Wheeler to
give KU a 4-2 advantage it held throughout the remainder
of the game.
Sowers (0-2) ended the day allowing eight hits, three
walks and four earned runs in eighth innings of work.
His 12 strikeouts tied a career-high set exactly one
year ago in his Hawkins Field debut against Iowa.
Vanderbilt grabbed its only lead of the day, at 2-1,
in the bottom of the fourth. Jeff Boutwell delivered
a two-out two-RBI single to right field off KU starter
Josh Duran that scored Matt Zeller and Ryan Klosterman.
Kansas took an early 1-0 lead in the third inning when
Appuhn led off with a walk and scored on a RBI single
After the fourth inning, Vanderbilt did not reach scoring
position again until the ninth. VU's Rucker Taylor legged
out a two-out infield single hit deep in the hole at
shortstop. Warner Jones followed with a double down
the right field line that pushed Taylor to third base.
However, Zeller struck out to end the game.
Kansas reliever Brandon Johnson (3-1) earned the win.
Johnson, who entered the game in the fifth for Duran,
surrendered only four hits and a walk while striking
out five Commodores. Chris Smart came on in the ninth
and earned his third save.
Cesar Nicolas led all Vanderbilt hitters with a 3-for-4
outing at the plate. Boutwell went 2-for-4 with a pair
Vanderbilt travels to the state of Florida this week
to play four games in Jacksonville. The Commodores take
on Jacksonville (3/4), Central Michigan (3/5), Michigan
State (3/7) and Notre Dame (3/8).