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Weekend Baseball Thread | Baylor Bears At Oklahoma Sooners

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Sooners Drop Rubber Match 10-5 & Series To Baylor

In their final home game of the season, the Oklahoma Sooners came up short with a 10-5 loss in the rubber match against the Baylor Bears. The loss today, drops OU to 26-23 overall and 6-12 in the conference. Looking ahead, the potential of not making the Big XII Tournament could become a reality as TCU and Oklahoma St. remain on the schedule.

To start the afternoon, the Bears quickly jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first behind a Grayson Porter's three-run homer against Ralph Garza. However, the Sooners answered with two of their own in the bottom half of the inning before taking a 4-3 lead after two. Yet, Baylor managed to continue to push runs across the plate.

In the top of the third, Porter's sacrifice-fly secured the lead once again for BU as they never looked back eventually tallying up 16 hits. One subject talked about all weekend long has been the pullben of each ball club. The goal is to get the opponent to dip into their pen first and that exactly the strategy the Bears employed. With a bases loaded situation and no outs, Garza was pulled after in the top of the fourth inning. During that time, the righty gave up 8 hits and 8 earned runs.

In comparison, Oklahoma came up with 12 hits of their own as the Baylor pitcher, Drew Tolson, held a surging offense at bay through six innings by simply putting the ball into play and the letting the defense work. The tactic worked as Oklahoma was held scoreless in the final 5 innings.

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OU Baseball Sound Bytes | Sooners Talk Baylor Win

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After Saturday's 13-7 win over Baylor to even their three-game series at one game each, Coach Hughes, Anthony Hermelyn and Craig Aikin talked about the relief of winning, hitting for the cycle, looking towards the post season and much more.

Use the media player to listen to post game interviews

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Sooners End Skid With 13-7 Win Over Baylor

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Oklahoma's seven-game losing streak came in a big way on Sunday with an offensive explosion that sets up a rubber-match for Sunday afternoon. It didn't start easy though as the Sooners, once again, had to play from behind.

The win puts the Sooners in a position that they haven't been in for a while now. "We're in a decent position here to win a series, something we haven't done in a while," Coach Hughes said after the game. "Hopefully we'll take advantage of the opportunity."

Baylor immediately put runs on the board in the first inning when leadoff batter Hayden Ross was hit by a pitch, with two strikes against him, and then advanced to third on an Adam Toth single through the left side. With runners on the corners, Matt Menard doubled down the left baseline to score both Ross and Toth for a 2-0 lead.

Craig Aikin led off the bottom half of the second with a double to right field and then moved to third on a Sheldon Neuse hit to center that couldn't be fielded by a diving Logan Brown. A sacrifice by Mac James would then score Aikin and draw Oklahoma to within 2-1.

The Bears would get their leadoff hitter on base for the second inning in a row as Mitch Price singled to right field. He went to third two batters later when Logan Brown sent the ball back to right, giving Baylor runners on second and third with just one out. Starting pitcher Jacob Evans record his first strikeout, as he hit the top of the Baylor lineup for the second time, but Brett Doe delivered a two-out double to center field to score both Price and Brown.

Trailing 4-1 going into the bottom half of the second, Anthony Hermelyn led off with a triple and then came home when Hunter Haley smoked a ball into center field. Haley would then be gunned down when Kolby Carpenter hit directly to second base. Carpenter would then take second, by swiping it, on the next pitch and then move to third on a sacrifice by Hector Lorenzana. Aikin tripled to right field, scoring Carpenter, to pull the Sooners back to within one.

With the game still up for Grabs, Coach Hughes made a pitching change at the top of the third by bringing in Robert Tasin. A leadoff walk of Menard would give the Bears a runner on base to start third consecutive inning. He moved to third on a two-out double by Aaron Dodson but ended up being stranded.

A two-out single by Austin O'Brien, followed by a blooper into shallow right by Hermelyn put the Sooners in scoring position in the bottom of the third with Hunter Haley at the plate but a pop out to left ended Oklahoma's threat.

The Bears made it their fourth consecutive inning with the leadoff batter on base when Logan Brown started the fourth with a bunt up the left baseline. Brown then stole second base to give the Bears a runner in scoring position with no outs. While it looked like Tasin would work his way out of a scoring position jam for the second inning in a row by retiring the next two batters, Adam Toth drilled his third home run of the year to extend Baylor's lead to 6-3.

Oklahoma took control of the game in the bottom of the fourth when they batted through the order (and then some), to score eight runs off eight hits. Hector Lorenzana got it started with a solo home run over the left field wall, putting the Sooners down 6-4 but they weren't close to being done. Aikin recorded his third hit of the game with a single to second. He was moved to second on a Taylor Alspaugh walk just before Sheldon Neuse loaded the bases with a single that nearly hit Aikin as he led off on second. The flood gates opened up for Oklahoma after that with Mac James delivering a 2-RBI single and Austin O'Brien juicing a 2-RBI double to left, putting the Sooners up 8-6.

"I would have considered this a must win, if you asked me before the game," Oklahoma catcher Hector Lorenzana (2/4, 2 RBI) said about the fourth inning. "We don't panic when we get down. I think we just kept our composure and kept string quality at bats together and we ended up having an eight run inning."

Hunter Haley was the ninth Sooner batter to take the plate in the inning. His two-out blooper to shallow center scored O'Brien from second to push the Sooners up by three runs. An error by Baylor short-stop Brett Doe scored Haley to make it a 10-6 lead. Oklahoma added one more run to their count, off the bat of Lorenzana, to hold an 11-6 advantage at the end of the inning.

After the Bears went down in order in the fifth, a pair of solo home runs by Sheldon Neuse and Anthony Hermelyn moved OU to a 13-6 lead.

Oklahoma starter Jacob Evans only lasted two innings after giving up four runs off five hits. Robert Tasin took the mound in the top of the third, trailing 4-3, and guided the Sooners through the next five innings. He allowed two runs, off four hits, but most importantly he put a stop to Baylor's offensive attack.

Kyle Hayes took over on the mound in the 8th. After giving up a double and a single, he threw a wild pitch that scored Baylor's seventh run but the Bears still found themselves down six going to the bottom half.

"Can't say enough about Rober Tasin," Hughes commented on his reliever. "You know you get that eight spot and you need to up a zero up there. He had a shutdown inning and then did it for three more innings for us."

At the end of the afternoon Oklahoma's offensive stat line read - 13 runs off 19 hits, with ever player in the lineup scoring at least one run. Three Oklahoma batters were a hit shy of the cycle with Craig Aikin's 4-for-5 performance leading the way.

A birth in the conference tournament could still be on the line as the Sooners and Bears play the rubber-match on Sunday afternoon at 1:00 pm.

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3-2 Loss Drops Oklahoma Into 8th Place

When two slumping teams face off against each other then there's guaranteed to be a slump-buster. It appears, after one game, that the Baylor Bears are not the salve for what is ailing the Sooners as the OU slump continued in Friday night's opener of their three-game series.

The Bears, who had only won twice on the road this season, rallied from a 0-2 deficit to get a quick lead in the series. Oklahoma scored both of their runs in the bottom of the third but, despite outhitting the Bears 6-5, the Sooners wouldn't be able to push across any other runs on the night.

Kolbey Carpenter scored on a Craig Aikin single and then Sheldon Neuse scored Aikin with his seventh triple of the season. Baylor had an immediate response in the top of the fourth though as Grayson Porter and Duncan Wendel recorded RBI's to even the game at two runs apiece.

In a game that was fairly even all night, it was a mistake by the Sooners that proved to be the difference. With two outs in the top of the eighth, and runners on the corners, Baylor's Matt Menard hit the ball to short. Hector Lorenzana fielded the ball but his throw to first was off target. The off-throw allowed Logan Brown to score from third, providing the winning score of 3-2.

Friday's Big XII Baseball Scores

West Virginia

5

Texas

3

Morgantown, W. Va.

Oklahoma

2

Baylor

3

Norman, Okla.

Kansas

11

Texas Tech

3

Lawrence, Kan.

TCU

5

Kansas State

0

Fort Worth, Texas

Oklahoma State

8

Arizona State

5

Stillwater, Okla.

The loss dropped Oklahoma into eighth place in the conference standings. The saving grace for the Sooners was Kansas State losing 5-0 to TCU. It allowed the Sooners to keep a one-game lead over the Wildcats and remain qualified for this month's conference tournament.

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