Sooners spoil Jayhawks' sweep attempt on Senior Day
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Oklahoma rung up three crooked numbers, including a seven spot in the third inning, as the Kansas baseball team fell in the conference regular-season finale, 14-6, Saturday afternoon at Hoglund Ballpark.
The Sooners (34-21, 14-10 Big 12) hit up Kansas senior starter Taylor Turski (2-8) for nine runs, with seven coming with two outs in the third frame. As a result, the Jayhawks (25-28, 8-15 Big 12) were forced to go to their bullpen after just two and 2/3 innings, and used a combined four arms to get through the game.
The two teams combined to hit seven home runs on the day – four by Oklahoma and three by KU. Senior catcher Tanner Gragg hit his first four-bagger of the season while sophomores James Cosentino (7) and Benjamin Sems (4) each tallied a long ball for the Jayhawks.
OU’s third baseman Brylie Ware led all hitters with a 3-for-5 effort at the plate that included six RBIs off a three-run double and a three-run home run. That run support was more than enough for Sooner starter Nathan Wiles (6-3), who pitched seven innings to pick up the win.
Seniors: Prior to first pitch, Kansas recognized its senior class for their contributions to the baseball program. That class comprised of Luke Bakula, Tyler Davis, Casey Douglas, Tanner Gragg, Jon Hander, Brandon Johnson, Owen Taylor and Taylor Turski.
Long balls: The seven combined home runs marks the most such hits at Hoglund Ballpark since April 19, 2015, when Kansas and Texas united to achieve the same feat. The Jayhawks hit two home runs in that contest, while the Longhorns smacked five.
Bottom of 1st
Sophomore center fielder Mateo Zunica led off with a double and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Senior designated hitter Luke Bakula drove him in on a deep sacrifice fly to left field – KU 1, OU 0.
Top of 2nd
Oklahoma led off with back-to-back doubles by Brylie Ware and Kyle Mendenhall. A sacrifice bunt moved Mendenhall to third and he then scored on a passed ball – OU 2, KU 1.
Top of 3rd
The Sooners tagged KU’s Taylor Turski for seven runs, with six coming from two, two-out, three-run home runs by Ware and first baseman Cade Cavalli – OU 9, KU 1.
Bottom of 4th
Sophomore second baseman James Cosentino hits his seventh home run of the season to center field – OU 9, KU 2.
Bottom of 5th
Senior catcher Tanner Gragg hit a two-run home run, his first of the season – OU 9, KU 4.
Top of 6th
Cade Harris hit a one-out solo shot to extend the Sooners’ lead – OU 10, KU 4.
Bottom of 7th
Sophomore shortstop Benjamin Sems hits a two-run home run – OU 10, KU 6.
Top of 8th
Oklahoma adds a four-spot after a home run by Tyler Hardman and a three-run double by Ware – OU 14, KU 6.
Kansas hosts Western Illinois Sunday, May 20, for one final tune up before heading to Oklahoma City for the 2018 Big 12 Baseball Championship at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. Fans can watch Sunday’s game on ESPN3 or tune into an audio broadcast on the Jayhawk Radio Network via KUAthletics.com/Radio.
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