Cowboys Are Accepting Of Bedlam Gifts

Oklahoma State has made such an immediate transition back to successful winning baseball under Josh Holliday. How has Holliday done it? One thing is certain and that is pitching has been better than it has maybe ever has been in the program's history. Offensively, the Cowboys have learned to be the best gift takers in the Big 12, and Friday night's 9-6 Bedlam victory in Tulsa was a good example.

After the Sooners used three singles, two of those hit pretty well, to go up 3-0 in the first inning the Cowboys scored eight unanswered runs. They did it by making the most of eight walks by OU pitching, a hit by pitch, and two Sooner errors.

Taking gifts and making the most of them started in the top of the second when OU starter Jake. Elliott, known as a strike thrower, walked the first two Cowboys. As is so often the case, Conor Costello and Tim Arakawa came "home to roost." Catcher Bryan Case's RBI single was the big hit. Yes, the Cowboys had five hits among the gifts that help stretch out the value of the Sooners charity.

In the fifth inning there were three more walks by OU pitching and they came after two outs started the inning. An RBI single to right by Costello and a throwing error by OU shortstop Sheldon Neuse led to three runs scoring and the Cowboys grabbing the lead at 5-3.

In the sixth a lead-off walk to the Cowboys nine hole hitter and third baseman Jacob Chappell and then Gage Green getting hit in the chest after he squared to bunt led to three more runs.

Corey Hassel was safe on a bunt single to the left side of the infield. Hassel, by the way, also made three sensational catches in right field, two diving grabs, and a running shoe top stop too. Donnie Walton hit a screamer to dead center for a sac fly. Then Dustin Williams busted an RBI double to the gap in left center. Oklahoma State led 8-3.

OSU made the most out of donations from their Bedlam rival and they have done a great job of accepting similar contributions from the rest of the Big 12 since Holiday's arrival. He has made executing and taking advantage of situations a priority in the Pokes program.

However, there are times that you want to put an exclamation point on what you are doing and in the top of the seventh the reigning Big 12 Player of the Week Ryan Sluder did just that as he took a Ralph Garza pitch and put it in the bleachers over the left field wall. A little show of strength and a 9-3 lead for the Cowboys.

Accepting gifts, winning the opening game of the Bedlam series, having ace lefty Michael Freeman set to go for the second game on Saturday in Bricktown, and it is easy to see how Holliday and his coaching staff design all of these Big 12 series wins. The Cowboys go south on the turnpike at 30-14 overall and 13-6 in the Big 12 and still in first place.


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