Baseball Closes Road Swing at Kansas State

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
April 26-28 | Manhattan, Kan. | Tointon Family Stadium
Oklahoma
oklahomaKansas State
Kansas State
Pitching Matchup
First Pitch Oklahoma Kansas State
Fri. 6 p.m. RHP-Nathan Wiles (6-2, 3.71) RHP-Griffin Hassall (2-1, 2.33)
Sat. 4 p.m. LHP-Levi Prater (6-3, 2.20) LHP-Caleb Littlejim (4-1, 3.76)
Sun. 1 p.m. RHP-Ben Abram (6-1, 3.10) RHP-Jordan Wicks (5-1, 2.52)

FIRST PITCH

• Oklahoma returns to Big 12 play with a road trip to Manhattan, Kan., to take on Kansas State. Game times are 6 p.m. Friday, 4 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday at Tointon Family Stadium.
• The Sooners will conclude an 11-game road swing against Kansas State this weekend. OU is 4-4 in their previous eight games on this road swing.
• The Sooners lead the overall series against the Wildcats, 168-161, including a 55-32 advantage in Manhattan.
• OU ranks 15th in the country with a 3.26 team ERA. The Sooners rank 17th in the country in double plays (38), 25th in triples (14), 21st in shutouts (4) and 14th in fielding percentage (.980). OU batters have drawn 216 walks, a total that ranks 28th nationally.
• Oklahoma is No. 39 in the most recent NCAA RPI rankings through April 24 games. The Sooners are 11-9 in road games and have 12 wins in 22 games against opponents in the top 100 of the RPI rankings. OU is one of six Big 12 schools in the RPI top 50, joining Texas Tech (17), West Virginia (19), Oklahoma State (21), Baylor (33) and Texas (42). With Kansas State (71), TCU (76), and Kansas (95), every Big 12 school ranks in the top 100 of the RPI.
• All 12 of Oklahoma’s remaining regular season games are against teams currently ranked in the top 100 of the NCAA RPI, including nine games against teams in the RPI top 50. Four of those contests will be played at home, two at neutral sites and six will be played on the road.

ON THE AIR

• The games will air on Sportstalk 1400 AM/99.3 FM and the Sooner Sports Network with Toby Rowland on the call.
• Friday’s game will be available on FOX College Sports Central via K-StateHD.TV, and the Saturday and Sunday games will be broadcast via ESPN3.

ABOUT THE SOONERS

• OU is in its second year under the direction of head coach Skip Johnson. Johnson is 66-39 as OU head coach, and led the Sooners to an NCAA regional appearance last season.
• Oklahoma won its 2,600th game in program history on March 24. The Sooners are 2,607-1,511-12 (.633) all-time in their 119th season of competition.
• OU has allowed three or fewer runs in 23 of 42 games this season, and allowed one or zero runs 13 times.
• OU ranks second in the Big 12 in fewest walks per nine innings (3.69) and ERA (3.26; leader WVU is at 3.22). Offensively, OU leads the conference in triples (14) and ranks third in doubles (80).
• OU is batting .266 as a team and averaging 5.8 runs per game, with 80 doubles, 14 triples and 19 home runs. The Sooners allow opponents 3.7 runs per game and a .234 batting average.
• The Sooners have a 3.26 team ERA with 358 strikeouts to 154 walks in 375.1 innings. The starting pitchers have a combined 2.94 ERA and have struck out 219 batters and allowed 199 hits in 229.1 innings.
• Junior shortstop Brandon Zaragoza is on the watch list for the Brooks Wallace Award, given by the College Baseball Foundation to the nation’s top shortstop. He is batting .272 with a team-high 35 runs scored and is third on the team with 25 RBIs. He has totaled seven doubles and 30 walks and posted a .960 fielding percentage in 173 chances. He is on a nine-game hitting streak and has reached base in each of his last 15 contests.
• Sophomore Cade Cavalli is on the midseason watch list for the John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year award and the National Pitcher of the Year award, which are presented by the College Baseball Foundation. On the mound, he is 5-2 with a 3.10 ERA in 10 starts, with 49 strikeouts and a .244 opponent batting average in 52.1 innings. At the plate, he is batting .319 with five doubles, four home runs, two triples, 17 RBIs, 16 runs scored and nine walks in 72 at bats.
• Freshman Ben Abram is also on National Pitcher of the Year award watch list. He is 6-1 with a 3.10 ERA in 10 starts, with 47 strikeouts to 10 walks and a .234 opponent batting average in 52.1 innings.
• Junior Jason Ruffcorn is on the Stopper of the Year award mideseason update. He earned saves in both the Saturday and Sunday wins last week at Minnesota. He leads the Big 12 and ranks seventh nationally in saves (10). He also leads the league and ranks ninth nationally with 24 appearances.
• Junior outfielder Brady Harlan hit his first collegiate home run on Sunday – a three-run shot that gave the Sooners a 3-2 lead in the fifth inning. He then drove in three runs in OU’s 9-4 win at WIchita State on Tuesday. He has 17 RBIs on the season, six of which have come in the last two games. Harlan, a December 2018 graduate of the University of Texas who is playing his first season since 2016, did not homer in his one season playing at UT. He only hit one home run in high school.
• Sophomore first baseman Tyler Hardman has reached base in 14 straight games. He leads the Sooners with a .320 batting average, 33 RBIs, five home runs, 11 doubles, 17 multiple hit games and eight multiple RBI games.
• Freshman Wyatt Olds also ranks ninth nationally and is tied with Ruffcorn in the Big 12 with 24 appearances. He has pitched 20 scoreless outings in his 24 appearances this season.
• Sophomore outfielder Tanner Tredaway hit two RBI doubles at Wichita State on Tuesday, doubling his total of two-base hits for the season. He leads the team with six stolen bases and has a hit in three of his last four starts.

ABOUT THE WILDCATS

• Kansas State is in its first year under head coach Pete Hughes, who has led the Wildcats to a 20-22 record this season. Hughes is the former head coach at Oklahoma, where he posted a 128-107-1 record from 2014-17.
• Kansas State has won seven of its last 10 games, including two of three games each of the last two weekends at Texas and at home against TCU. KSU won 9-2 at Omaha on Tuesday.
• KSU is hitting .261 as a team, and averaging 4.95 runs and 2.8 extra base hits per game. Zach Kokoska leads the team with a .329 batting average and has six home runs, 26 RBIs and 28 runs scored. Will Brennan is hitting .306 with 13 doubles, 24 RBIs and 29 runs scored.
• The Wildcats have a 5.21 team ERA and 353 strikeouts against 180 walks in 366.0 innings.

SERIES HISTORY

• Oklahoma and Kansas State have played 229 times. OU leads the series, 168-61.
• The Sooners have won the last four meetings and eight of the last nine, including a three-game sweep last season in Norman.
• OU has won two of three games in its last two trips to Manhattan (2015 and 2017). KSU won two of three games in 2011 and 2013.

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