OU baseball: Kansas hands Sooners first loss in conference play
Astrud Reed, The Oklahoma Daily
The No. 14 Oklahoma baseball team had its ups and downs during Saturday's series finale against Kansas, but the Jayhawks had the last say as they defeated the Sooners, 10-8, at L. Dale Mitchell Park.
OU (25-5, 5-1 Big 12) came back from a 7-0 deficit and eventually took the 8-7 lead in the fifth, but Kansas scored the game's last three runs and some late-inning controversy occurred to hand the Sooners their first loss in conference play.
Down by two runs with no outs and a runner on first in the ninth, a slow grounder to second resulted in a dropped ball, putting the tying run on base. But, the umpires called interference, resulting in a double play that eventually got coach Sunny Golloway ejected.
Key Stat: 10 — Despite the late-game drama, the Sooners stranded 10 runners in the two-run loss. It does not matter if OU scores eight runs, those stranded runners are killer.
Key Player: Kansas relief pitcher Jordan Piché — The closer recorded the last five outs of the game to earn the save, his third of the season. He entered the game with one out and two runners on in the eighth, and he didn't allow either run to score. Piché then recorded a controversial one-two-three ninth.
Hit Streak Watch: Oberste extended his hit streak to 30 games with an RBI bloop double in the first inning. He went 1-for-5 Saturday.
What it means: The Sooners could not complete the sweep, meaning they need to defeat Oklahoma State on Tuesday to head to Austin without a sour taste in their mouths. You know OU wanted the sweep and a perfect conference record heading into the Longhorns series, so this loss, especially in the manner in which it happened, stings a bit.
What’s next for the Sooners: OU will kick off its four-game season series with Oklahoma State at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at L. Dale Mitchell Park. The game will not count toward either team's conference records, but it is a good midweek game for both team's RPI. Freshman pitcher Ralph Garza Jr. is slated to start. He threw a complete game in last Tuesday's 3-1 victory over Oral Roberts in Tulsa.