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Archive for Sunday, February 15, 2004

Stanford stops Jayhawks again, 6-3

Pair of home runs by Metcalf can’t lift struggling Kansas baseball squad

February 15, 2004

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— Two homers by Travis Metcalf were not enough for Kansas University's baseball team Saturday, and the Jayhawks dropped their second straight game to No. 4 Stanford, 6-3.

Stanford (7-1) took a first-inning lead against KU starter Chris Smart (2-3) when Sam Fuld walked and advanced on a wild pitch and two groundouts.

The Jayhawks (7-6-1) evened the score in the second when junior Travis Metcalf connected for his second homer of the season off Jeff Gilmore (2-0).

The Cardinal made it 2-1 in the bottom half of the inning with three straight hits.

Stanford pounded out two more runs in the third, which forced the Jayhawks to go to their bullpen with two outs in the frame.

Junior Scott Sharpe replaced Smart, who surrendered four runs on six hits in 22/3 innings and took the loss.

Gilmore earned the victory by limiting the Jayhawks to two runs and five hits with five strikeouts in seven innings. He was backed by perfect defense. Stanford did not make an error for the sixth time this season as the Cardinal improved its fielding percentage to .990.

"I had good enough stuff to get a strikeout here and there, but the consistent outs were coming as a result of groundballs," Gilmore said. "The most underrated part of our team is our defense."

Metcalf hit his second homer, another solo shot, in the fourth.

Stanford, however, added single runs in both the fifth and sixth innings for a 6-2 lead. Eight of Stanford's nine starters had at least one hit as the Cardinal outhit Kansas, 10-7, to reach double digits in hits for the seventh time in eight games this season.

KU sophomore Jared Schweitzer broke a streak of 10 consecutive batters retired by Stanford's Gilmore and reliever Matt Manship with a double down the left-field line in the top of the ninth. Senior Ryan Baty moved Schweitzer over with a fly to right before senior Matt Tribble drove him in with a single. The rally was cut short when Metcalf grounded into a game-ending double play.

Stanford extended its home win streak to 14 games.

The Jayhawks will try to prevent a sweep at 11 a.m. PST (1 p.m. CST) today when Kansas junior Mike Zagurski (1-0) faces Stanford's Mark Jecmen (1-0).

Kansas, which lost the series opener 7-1 Friday, is 0-4-1 during its last five games.

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