It definitely paid Wednesday to be a Creighton baseball player with a last name on the backside of the alphabet.
The Bluejays traveled to Los Angeles for Friday’s NCAA tournament game against UCLA. The team had to take two flights in order to accommodate the size of the travel party.
Players with last names starting with the first 13 letters of the alphabet left Omaha around 7:30 a.m. with a connection in Minneapolis. The others flew through Denver on a flight that departed Omaha shortly after 6 a.m.
“We were joking around yesterday that we were the lucky ones because we were getting an extra hour of sleep,” Creighton pitcher Ty Blach said. “As it turned out, the other guys were the ones that had the last laugh.”
That’s because Blach’s group spent about eight hours in the Minneapolis airport because of mechanical problems with the connecting flight. They arrived in Minneapolis around 8:30 a.m. and didn’t leave until about 4:30 p.m.
They finally arrived in Los Angeles around 6:30 p.m. PDT. Their teammates already had been in California for more than seven hours.
The long delay was caused by a problem with a fuel pump on the team’s connecting flight in Minneapolis, Blach said.
“They didn’t have the part there, so they were supposed to fly it in,” he said. “They finally ended up splitting our flight up and putting us on two smaller planes.”
Blach said the players did their best to cope with the delay.
“Some of the guys watched movies on their computers, others read,” he said. “A lot of guys walked around the airport. I think we got to see all the nooks and crannies of the place.”
The delay did cause the group to miss attending the major league game between the New York Yankees and the Los Angeles Angels. Former Creighton player Scott Servais is the Angels’ assistant general manager and arranged tickets for the team. Servais is the nephew of Creighton coach Ed Servais.
“That would have been fun,” Blach said, “but I think we’re looking forward to getting some dinner and then getting to bed. It’s been a long day.”
Contact the writer: