Baseball Takes on UAPB in Midweek Series

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
FEBRUARY 17, 2014
 No. 28 Oklahoma (2-1) vs. Arkansas Pine Bluff (0-4)
 Location:  Norman, Okla. - L. Dale Mitchell Park (3,180)
 Tickets:  Tuesday | Wednesday
 Radio:  KREF Sports Talk 1400
 Toby Rowland
 Chris Plank
 Live Webcast:
 Live Stats:
 Game Info:  Game Notes (PDF)
 Pitching Match-Ups
 3:00 PM Tuesday:  RHP-Connor Buchman (Jr.)
 3:00 PM Wednesday:  RHP-Corey Copping (So., 0-1, 5.74)

NORMAN, Okla. – A five-game homestand to open the 2014 season continues for the Oklahoma baseball team with contests against Arkansas Pine Bluff Tuesday and Wednesday at 3:00 pm.

Oklahoma is 2-1 following its season-opening series against Seton Hall. As a team, the Sooners hits .297 and totaled 28 runs to the Pirates 15. Redshirt-junior right fielder Taylor Alspaugh leads the way early on with a .455 (5-for-11) batting average to go with three runs, three RBI and a triple. Sophomore catcher Anthony Hermelyn is close behind at .417 (5-for-12) with four runs, three RBI and his first career home run. The OU pitching staff owns a 3.81 earned run average as a unit and struck out 21 batters in 26 innings of work.

1st - On the Air
The voice of the Sooners Toby Rowland returns for the 2014 season to provide play-by-play on KREF Sports Talk 1400. Joining him on the sidelines will be color commentator Chris Plank.

2nd - Weekend Recap
Following an opening day loss to Seton Hall, 7-5 on Friday, Oklahoma reeled off wins of 8-2 and 15-6 to take the series. Hermelyn’s first career home run came on the heels of freshman third baseman Sheldon Neuse’s first career homer in the seventh inning of Saturday’s contest. Neuse’s was a three-run shot as the Sooners put up five runs in the inning. It marked the first time OU players hit back-to-back home runs since Cody Reine and Chris Ellison did so against Oklahoma State on May 7, 2010. In the finale, Oklahoma totaled 18 hits in a rout of SHU. Junior catcher Mac James led the way with a four-hit day, while sophomore left fielder Hunter Haley added a three-run jack.

3rd - Scouting the Golden Lions
Arkansas Pine Bluff comes to Norman with a 0-4 record after getting swept at Tulane over the weekend. Junior outfielder Andre Davis hit an impressive .545 (6-for-11) on the weekend. Junior infielder Joshua Cassidy drove in two runs and hit .250. UAPB’s staff owns a 6.00 ERA and anchored by its pen, which had three pitchers throw at least one shutout inning. Senior LHP Jim Ploeger made two appearances and owns a 2.70 ERA in 3.1 innings.

4th - Last Time They Met
OU took both ends of a mid-week doubleheader on February 19, 2013 by scores of 2-4 and 11-1. Game two ended after just eight innings. Hector Lorenzana went 3-for-3 with two doubles, while Matt Oberste crushed a three-run home run and went 2-for-4. Right-hander Drew Krittenbrink lasted four innings in a no-decision start, surrendering just two hits and striking out four.

5th - Opening the Gates
Oklahoma’s season-opening series against Seton Hall was the second highest opening weekend attendance total in program history as 3,754 fans passed through the gates. The previous record was set in 2011 when 4,117 saw the Sooners face William & Mary, the season after reaching the 2010 College World Series. The single-game attendance record on opening day was set after the 1994 CWS National Championship team returned home to face Missouri Southern in front of a crowd of 2,183 in 1995.

6th - Who’s on First?
In the first weekend of action, the Sooners started three different first basemen. Freshman Niko Buentello made his debut anchoring first on opening day before seeing action at the DH spot in the next two games. Junior utility man Keach Ballard appeared at first in game two and Hermelyn, who started 48 games at catcher in 2013, made his first collegiate start at first on Sunday. Freshman Austin O’Brien is waiting in the wings for a shot at first after making two pinch-hit appearances.

7th - Crooked Numbers
Through the first three games, Oklahoma has put up two or more runs in an inning eight times and three or more six times. In game two against Seton Hall, the Sooners set a season-high with five runs scored in the seventh.

8th - Opening Day Starter
Sophomore lefty Jacob Evans made his first career start on opening day, marking the first time a Sooner pitcher made his first career start on opening day since Zach Neal in 2010. Evans is also the third straight lefty to start on opening day, following Dillon Overton in 2012 and 2013.

9th - TWI(OU)B History
In 2010, the Sooners road to Omaha got off to a 4-0 start with a road sweep at San Diego State. Oklahoma outscored the Aztecs, 38-16 for the weekend, highlighted by a 17-5 victory in game two. In that game, Tyler Ogle came off the bench to hit a grand slam in the ninth inning. Caleb Bushyhead and Ross Hubbard each contributed three RBI in the win. 



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