NORMAN, Okla. -- It took the full nine innings, but the No. 16 Oklahoma baseball team rallied from behind for the seventh time this season to record a 4-3 victory over UT-Arlington on Tuesday at L. Dale Mitchell Park. Jackson Williams, who entered the game to catch in the final frame, plated the game-winning run on a chopper up the middle with one out in the ninth inning.
The win moved OU’s record to 22-9, while UTA fell to 14-16.
“You really want to get that win in mid-week games because it gives you confidence going into the weekend” said OU head coach Sunny Golloway. “Tonight could have been a crushing blow, but we came back to pull things out.”
OU trailed 3-0 after the Mavericks at-bat in the seventh inning and the Sooners brought the game within striking distance after a two-run seventh inning. Kevin Smith brought in those two runs on a triple to dead center. For Smith, the two runs increased his team-leading RBI total to 32 and marked the senior’s 21st and 22nd RBI in the last 15 games.
The odds were not in the Sooners’ favor as they went up to the plate in the ninth inning. OU was 0-6 in games when trailing after eight innings this season.
However, the middle of the Sooners’ lineup completed the comeback victory, as Kody Kaiser drilled a triple to center field to lead off the ninth inning. The next batter, Ryan Rohlinger, drove in Kaiser on a single down the left field line and he later scored the decisive run on Williams single.
Will Savage pitched the final two innings and surrendered one hit to improve to 3-2. UTA’s Chris Taylor took the loss and fell to 1-3 after giving up four hits and two runs.
OU’s starter, John Brownell, pitched a career-high six innings in his first start of 2006. The right-hander allowed two runs off six hits and struck out four batters.
For UTA, Kyle Gainley held the OU offense, which recorded its 19th game this season with 10 or more hits, in check with zero runs and seven hits in 4 2/3 innings.
Kaiser led the offense on Tuesday night with three hits and the sophomore has now hit safely in five of the last six games with 10 base knocks. The Mavericks’ Adam Moore finished a perfect day at the plate with three hits and Kyle Thomason led the club with two RBI, both coming off a two-run homer in the fourth inning.
Next up for the Sooners is a trip to College Station to take on Texas A&M (18-14, 2-7) for a three-game set over the weekend. Friday and Saturday’s games are set for 7 p.m. and the series will conclude on Sunday at 1 p.m.