Sooners Complete Sweep of Missouri

NORMAN, Okla. — It was the complete opposite of last week, as OU fell behind in every game this weekend and came back to win all three, defeating the Missouri Tigers 5-4 in the latest contest to round out a sweep.

And it took place behind the bat of left fielder Erik Ross, who pounded out four hits, tying his career-high set back last year against Oakland.

Ross mashed a pair of doubles to go along with a couple singles, scored two runs and hit home another as part of his 4-for-4 performance.

"I was just getting--I mean, I was finding pitches to hit," Ross said. "I was seeing a lot of pitches. My first two at bats I think I saw over five pitches both at bats. So, I was fighting off those pitches I didn't want and really catching the mistake and really taking advantage of it."

Center fielder Max White also got in on the Sooner offense, recording a pair of RBIs while going 1-for-4.

The Tigers took the early 2-0 lead in the top of the third on catcher Ben Turner's two-run double to the right center gap.

But, like they did in their previous two meetings, the Sooners stormed back quickly and took the lead with three in their half.

"We didn't panic," said OU head coach Sunny Golloway. "We understand that now we can score runs. We've got hitters in better positions."

Ross first cut the lead in half with an RBI single bringing home third baseman Garrett Carey.

Then, White blasted his two-run double to dead center, scoring catcher Dylan Neal, who earlier reached on a hit by pitch, and Ross.

"Even Max White today, we're not talking about his great performance but I'm telling you he worked some counts and he had some big time swings," Golloway said.

Designated hitter Evan Mistich tripled and scored on Carey's groundout the following inning, putting OU on top 4-2 after four.

Neither team scored again until the seventh when, this time, Bushyhead ripped a double down the left field line to score Ross for the second time in the game.

It turned out to be a much-needed double because the Tigers scored two in the ninth on a two-run double by first baseman Michael McGraw.

"I told him, you know, 'Look, you're going to hit one off the scoreboard. You gotta tuck that front side and go,'" Golloway said. "That ended up being the winning hit. We didn't know it at the time, but it was a really big hit, really big RBI for us. So, it was a one-RBI double that we needed to win a ball game."

After allowing those two runs in the ninth, reliever Steven Okert, who's recently shifted from the rotation to the bullpen, slammed the door shut and got the save despite facing the pressure of having the tying run in scoring position.

"It's a whole different mentality," Okert said. "You just gotta throw how you know to throw and know you're defense is gonna back you up no matter what."

Pitcher Jonathan Gray picked up his third win of the season after lasting 5 2/3 innings and giving up just the two earned runs, while striking out six and walking four.

Missouri pitcher Brett Graves got the loss, allowing three earned runs over 2 2/3 innings and striking out just one, but walking two.

Tigers right fielder Blake Brown's 21-game hitting streak was snapped in the contest.

The Sooners (22-14, 7-8 Big 12), winners of four straight, now head to Oral Roberts for a 6:30 p.m. Tuesday contest in Tulsa.

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