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Big 12 Recap

Non-Conference Series:

1. Texas Tech vs. North Dakota State

The Texas Tech Red Raiders were the odd man out this weekend in Big 12 play and welcomed the North Dakota Bison to Dan Law Field. The Red Raiders were able to sweep on Saturday to take the series 2-1. Friday, it was Brendan Girton vs Cade Feeney. Brendan Girton was good early before tiring in the middle innings. He would last just 4.1, allowing 4 runs with 3 of them earned. Owen Washburn and Austin Green were the entire offense for the Red Raiders as the Bison were able to limit them to just 1 run off 4 hits. Green had the lone RBI, a homer to lead off the second. Washburn had 2 hits, but was unable to score either time. The Red Raiders dropped the opening game 8-1. Saturday, Tech was able to rebound and sweep the double header 8-5 in game one and 8-3 in game two. Texas Tech used strong starts from both of their Saturday starters, Mason Molina (game one) and Trendan Parish (game two). Both guys were able to give quality starts and earn wins. Molina gave the Gauchos 5.1 innings, while Parish went six complete innings. The Red Raiders also rebounded at the plate, recording 18 hits across the double header. Zac Vooletich and Kevin Bazzell each collected four hits each to lead Tech.

Per Texas Tech's game one win represented Tadlock's 400th career win as the head coach of the Red Raiders. He is already the second-winningest coach in program history behind Larry Hays and now joins Hays as one of two to ever reach the 400 milestone.

Conference Play:

1. TCU vs. Oklahoma St.

We’re four weekends in and this one was the series of the weekend. With both of these teams ranked pretty high with postseason aspirations, this was must-see TV.

The series kicked off on Thursday with an Oklahoma State win, 7-6. The Cowboys used 5 home runs and a great bullpen outing from Even O’Toole to take game one on the road. David Mendham and Roc Riggio led the way as they both inch closer to double digit home runs. Marcus Brown, Zach Ehrhard and Tyler Wulfert also went deep. Chase Hoover (1-1) took the loss for the Frogs after allowing the seven runs on seven hits. He walked four and struck out six. Karson Bowen, and Austin Davis kept the game close, each collecting 2 hits in the losing effort.

Friday night, game two, was the Anthony Silva game. He carried the Frogs with two home runs and three RBIs to even the series following a 7-3 victory . The young Frogs, Kole Klecker (6-2) and Ben Abeldt, were tremendous in the win. Klecker allowed three runs on four hits over seven innings. He walked three and struck out five. Abeldt tossed two scoreless, finishing the night with four strikeouts. In the losing effort, the Cowboys were again paced by the duo of Roc Riggio and Tyler Wulfert who both homered and Roc Riggio added another hit.

Saturday was the rubber match. A TCU win would give them a tie for second in the Big 12, a Cowboy win would give them sole possession of the spot and would keep them in striking range of Texas. The game lived up to the hype early as we saw a back and forth game with 4 lead changes in the first 4 innings. TCU exploded for seven runs in the eighth to break a 5-5 tie and ran away with a 12-5 victory. Elijah Nunez was able to deliver the knockout punch with a base hit to center that was misplayed allowing two more runs to score.

2. Texas vs. Kansas St.

The leader of the Big 12, Texas, welcomed a surprise Kansas State squad to the Disch for an Easter Weekend Showdown. The Wildcats have been a nice surprise in the Big 12, sitting at 5-4 before the weekend including a sweep against the defending Big 12 Champs of Oklahoma.

Friday was the Lucas Gordon Show. The lefty has been a mainstay all year for the Horns. He threw 6 innings, allowing 2 runs on 2 hits and striking out 6. He pitched his way out of trouble in the first two innings to deliver a quality start. The Horns were able to come out late and score 5 in the 8th to take game one. Eric Kennedy channeled his inner Douglas Hodo to get it all started with a bunt single. Next take, the big boys, Dylan Campbell, Peyton Powell, and the USC Transfer Garret Guillemette, banged out 3 straight doubles. Porter Brown tripled and scored on a Tanner Carlson sac fly to give the Horns the lead. The game-winning run was driven in on a sacrifice fly by Tanner Carlson, who came off the bench in the previous inning. Zane Morehouse was able to shut the door to give the Horns the win.

Saturday was another come from behind win, this time for the Wildcats. After falling behind, 5-2, the Wildcats (20-13, 6-5) strung together two runs before Roberto Pena's RBI single pushed them over the top. Tyson Neighbors was tremendous for the Wildcats going three innings with 8 strikeouts to slam the door. This was the Wildcats first win in Austin since 2019.

Sunday, the Horns left no doubt as they cruised to an 8-2 victory. This was “the 2 out game” as the Longhorns scored seven of their eight runs with two outs on the board. Charlie Hurley was just what Texas needed on Sunday, as he pitched five innings and allowed just two runs on four hits. Dylan Campbell continued his tear in Big 12 play as he went 3-for-5 with a double and two RBI’s. Guillemette got the scoring going for the Horns with a 2-run homer in the first. Porter Brown added a double and a homer as well.

3. West Virginia vs. Kansas

Kansas pulled the upset of the weekend and took 2 of 3 from a hot Mountaineers team. Friday was a game the Jayhawks controlled early and often. Baumgartner tossed four innings in the start, allowing two runs on six hits. He struck out six batters and issued four walks. The Jayhawks got the offense going in the second inning when catcher Jake English blasted his sixth home run of the year. Chase Jans followed that up with a home run of his own. The two-run shot completed a three-run second inning for the Jayhawks. The Jayhawks added an insurance run in the ninth inning, as the Cal transfer Cole Elvis crushed his fifth homer of the season to push the Kansas lead to two heading to the bottom of the ninth. This would be all the Jayhawks would need to complete the upset.

Saturday was some history, as the Jayhawks were able to win 10-7 to take the series. This win is Kansas’s first road series win over a ranked opponent since 2017. The 5-3 start to Big 12 play is Kansas’ best ever through the first eight games since the inception of the Big 12 Conference for the 1997 season. The story of the game was how well the staff was able to keep the Mountaineer bats down with runners in scoring position. The West Virginia boys went 1-for-13 with the only hit being a two-run home run by Logan Sauve. The other five runs for WVU came on two sacrifice flies, two groundouts, and a bases-loaded hit-by-pitch.

Sunday, the Mountaineers were able to salvage and avoid the sweep. Freshman Robby Porco was lights out in just his second start of the season, as he struck out 12 batters in 6.0 innings while allowing just two runs, only one of which was earned. That is a staff high for the Mountaineers. At the plate, junior Landon Wallace hit two home runs and scored three runs while sophomore Grant Hussey added his seventh home run of the season. Sophomore JJ Wetherholt also added three hits to tick his average up to .448 on the season.

4. Oklahoma vs. Baylor

This ranked as the worst series of the weekend between the bottom 2 of the Big 12. This was a series the Sooners needed to sweep and minimum take 2 of 3. What ensued was a nightmare for the Sooners. Friday was the rain game that was slated to start at 6, but first pitch came at 8pm. OU dropped game one, 10-6. Brazton Douthit was tremendous for the Sooners, allowing only 1 hit across 4 innings in 83 pitches. The bullpen was unable to hold the lead as they allowed 10 runs across the next 5 innings. Kolby Branch and Hunter Simmons were the difference makers for the Bears, as they had 7 RBIs between them. This was Baylor's first Friday night win since opening night. In the nickname theme, this was the walk game.

One night after not drawing a single walk, OU drew 14. Anthony Mackenzie and Jackson Nicklaus each drove in two runs and James Hitt threw 5.2 innings in the Sooners 6-3 win. The Sooner bullpen woes have been well documented and this felt like a turning point in their season, allowing only 2 hits and a run across 3.1 innings of work.

Sunday, Baylor got the scoring going early with Colby Branch doubling in the first and later scoring to take a 2-0 lead. Will Carsten would last just 2 innings, allowing 4 to earn the loss. Braden Carmichael was able to provide Skip a much needed boost, going 5.2 and allowing no runs to keep the Sooners in it, but it was not enough as the Baylor Bullpen was able to dance out of trouble time and time again.

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