The Oklahoma Sooners (21-4, 3-0) are off to quite a start on the season, and that now includes conference play after picking up a sweep against the Kansas Jayhawks (13-10, 0-3) with a 10-5 Sunday win.
Unhitch the wagon!— Oklahoma Baseball (@OU_Baseball) March 24, 2019
Ruffcorn closes it out for his sixth save of the year, and the #Sooners sweep Kansas to open Big 12 play!
➡️ https://t.co/TDoLf3ZiqI pic.twitter.com/HQqBjo69VM
Levi Prater (5-1, 0.98 ERA) got the start for OU on Sunday, going 5.0 innings (99 pitches) while allowing a run (0 ER) on two hits, one walk and two hit batsmen while striking out six. Jaret Godman (1.1, 3 hits, 4 ER), Ledgend Smith (0.0, 1 hit), Aaron Brooks (0.2, 1 hit), Wyatt Olds (0.2, 2 hits) and Jason Ruffcorn (1.2) took OU the rest of the way, with Ruffcorn picking up the save (6).
At the plate, five Sooners recorded two hits apiece to contribute to a team total of 13. Brady Lindsly was the man who stood out, going 2-4 with a triple and 2 RBI. Tyler Hardman was also stellar with a 2-5 performance that included an RBI of his own — his team-high 27th of the season.
Tyler Hardman after improving to 21-4. #SoonersPosted by Crimson And Cream Machine on Sunday, March 24, 2019
Oklahoma got things moving in the bottom of the third when Diego Muniz opened the frame with a double – his second hit of the day. Brendan Zaragoza then singled through the hole into left, and Muniz was able to beat the throw home to get OU on the board first. After a Brylie Ware bloop single, Tyler Hardman singled past the first baseman to bring Zaragoza home and make it 2-0.
In the bottom of the fourth, the Sooners added a buffer when Conor McKenna led off with a triple and reached home on a Tanner Tredaway infield single. Tredaway then advanced to second on a sac punt before making it all the way home on a wild pitch and an E2 on the throw to third.
Kansas was able to get on the board in an unconventional way in the top of the fifth. Skyler Messinger led off with some fairly routine contact to center field, which was misread by Milan Walla. Messinger was able to make it to third after the ball got under his glove and to the wall, and the play was scored as a single and a fielding error. He then made it home on Rudy Karre’s sacrifice fly. Oklahoma then struck back and in the bottom half with three runs on a pair of hits from Hardman and Cade Cavalli as well as RBIs from Cavalli (single), Brady Lindsly (sac fly) and Diego Muniz (bases-loaded walk).
The Jayhawk bats caught fire in the top of the seventh, as KU was able to muster up four runs on five hits against Jaret Godman and Aaron Brooks. Brooks did, however, strand a pair of runners in scoring position to keep the Sooners out in front. In the bottom half, OU grabbed a run on three walks and a wild pitch to make it 8-5.
With the bases loaded and one out in the top of the eighth, Kansas was threatening to do some damage when Ruffcorn, a Texas A&M transfer who was declared eligible the morning of OU’s season opener, was called upon to clean up the mess. It only took him one pitch to do so, as he induced a 6-4-3 double play to get out of the frame. In the bottom half, the Sooners were able to extend the lead with Lindsly’s RBI triple. The crucial hit was Lindsly’s fourth triple of the season, which is tops in the nation amongst catchers. He then reached home on an E2 (on the throw back to the mound after the pitch) to make it 10-5.
Jason Ruffcorn after the sweep of Kansas. #SoonersPosted by Crimson And Cream Machine on Sunday, March 24, 2019
Next up for the Sooners is a Tuesday night non-conference matchup in Stillwater against the Oklahoma State Cowboys. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. CT on Fox Sports Oklahoma.
Skip after the #Sooners swept KansasPosted by Crimson And Cream Machine on Sunday, March 24, 2019