Inside OU's Struggles Against Texas

NORMAN, Okla. -- The Sooners haven't defeated the Texas Longhorns in a series on the diamond since 1998, prompting for an explanation on why victory has eluded them against their arch rival for so long, something Sooners Illustrated delves into right now.

Here are three reasons why the losing streak has extended to 13 years:

1. They've made a living of losing the series opener--It's no secret how important winning game one is in a three-game set. And OU has failed to do just that, losing the last nine with their latest 5-0 series opening setback last Friday night in Austin. That has allowed Texas to work with a 1-0 series lead and simply split the final two games for a series win, while forcing OU to sweep the last two for a series victory of their own. Needless to say, the Sooners have been unable to do so.

2. Inability to manufacture runs--A good example of this was Friday night against Texas ace Taylor Jungmann. OU loaded the bases in the top of the third inning and came up empty. Two innings later, the Sooners had runners at second and third with one out, and again, they couldn't push one across. For whatever reason, this has been a reoccurring theme against the Longhorns. The Sooners did, in fact, manufacture runs Sunday, and they came up victorious. Pushing runs across in whatever way possible is crucial, whether it be by a base hit, sacrifice fly or some other manner. In game three, they did that. In majority of the contests in the last 13 years, that hasn't been a regularity.

3. Texas pitching--Give some credit where it's due. It's not just all about OU failing to get the job done. The Longhorns always boast one of the nation's top pitching staffs, if not the No. 1 rotation in the country, and throughout recent years, they have had a stranglehold on Sooner hitters. This year, the ringleader is ace Jungmann, who owns a 10-0 record with a 0.90 ERA and 81 strikeouts to only 14 walks. In the past 13 years, Texas has rolled out many pitchers like Jungmann that have given them the advantage.

So, OU will have to start winning the first game of the series, scoring runs with a greater percentage of their opportunities and overcome that talented pitching staff if it's to shatter the streak in 2012.

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