Everybody Hits in OU's Big 12-Opening Win
Due to inclement weather in Sunday's forecast, Oklahoma and West Virginia will play a Saturday doubleheader to conlude the series. The action starts at 4 p.m. with the nightcap schedule for 7:30. Game one will air on FSOK, while game two will be streamed at SoonerSports.tv. Both games can be heard across the Sooner Sports Network and will be broadcast locally on Sportstalk 99.3 FM/1400 AM. Tickets purchased in advance for Saturday and Sunday's originally scheduled game will be honored at the field.
NORMAN – The University of Oklahoma baseball team’s lineup produced from top to bottom in a 19-6 Big 12-opening win over West Virginia in front of 1,107 at L. Dale Mitchell Park on Friday night. The Sooners moved to 15-9 on the season behind a 22-hit effort and seven innings from junior right-hander Jake Irvin (Bloomington, Minn.).
“Jake set the tone and went out there and got three-up, three-down; making some quality pitches in the first inning,” OU head coach Skip Johnson said of Irvin’s outing. “He had a really good presence and established the strike zone early. He pounded it after that.”
Oklahoma jumped on the Mountaineers (9-10, 0-1 Big 12) with a three-run first. The first five batters all reached with a hit, including a RBI-single to center by junior right fielder Steele Walker (Prosper, Texas) that started the scoring on his 100th career RBI. Redshirt-sophomore center fielder Kyler Murray (Allen, Teas) added a RBI-double into the right fielder corner and a sacrifice-fly by junior third baseman Brylie Ware (Sedgwick, Kan.) capped the scoring.
“We really executed the game of baseball,” continued Johnson. “Hitting is contagious. We kept the momentum in our dugout and that was a big thing.”
The Sooners’ offense continued to roll with four runs in the third to begin a stretch of six consecutive innings of scoring. Ware extended the OU lead to 5-0 in the third with a two-run triple over the head of the WVU center fielder and back-to-back RBI doubles from senior second baseman Kyle Mendenhall (Carlsbad, Calif.) and freshman first baseman Cade Cavalli (Bixby, Okla.) made it 7-0.
Leading 8-0, Oklahoma put the game out of reach with a four-run fifth, including a two-run double to right-center by Ware to push his RBI total to five for the night; matching his career-high. The runs continued to pour in for the Sooners an inning later as junior left fielder Cade Harris (Leona, Texas) belted a three-run home run to right.
Irvin (4-0) was charged with four runs against him, but all scored unearned after an error opened the door for the Mountaineers in the sixth. He retired seven in a row to start the game and later sat down eight in a row after a one-out double in the third. Irvin totaled nine strikeouts and let up just five hits and did not walk a batter for the second straight start.
All 10 Sooners that went to the plate recorded a hit. Four players had three hits or more as Walker led the way with a 4-for-6 night; his first career four-hit game. Ware was 3-for-4 and tallied the first six-RBI game by a Sooner since 2015. Harris was 3-for-5 and Lindsly was 3-for-3.
Right-hander BJ Myers (0-1) was pulled after the third for West Virginia. He gave up seven runs on nine hits and two walks with two strikeouts. The Mountaineers got nine hits from nine different players.
The teams will wrap up the three-game series on Saturday with a doubleheader beginning at 4 p.m. Senior right-hander Devon Perez (Ashburn, Va.) gets the ball in game one of the day.