By Derek Brown
CNHI News Service
NORMAN, Okla. —
NORMAN — The first Bedlam meeting of the season was decided in two pitches.
Oklahoma State went to Norman to take on rival Oklahoma on Tuesday night. The Cowboys laid the foundation of the win in the top of the second inning when Gage Green and Tim Arakawa sent the ball over the wall in right field. For Green and Arakawa it was their first home runs of the season. Aaron Cornell added another run in the sixth to come away with a 3-1 victory over the Sooners.
“That’s kind of what’s fun about this environment. A Bedlam game gives guys a chance to do something in a moment in a setting they will never forget. Those guys probably feel like a million bucks right now,” Oklahoma State coach Josh Holliday said. “Every run counts in college baseball.”
The Cowboys (20-9, 3-3) had been used to starting the game down in the early innings. This was not the case for OSU in the non-conference matchup Tuesday.
“That’s all we’ve been talking about is get rid of that first inning. We’ve been having some trouble there,” Green said. “Coach really stresses win every pitch, that’s how we simplify it up.”
Oklahoma State’s Tyler Nurdin tossed the first five innings. Nurdin struck out two Sooners and gave up two hits. Nurdin surrendered the Sooners’ lone run of the game but allowed just one in the five innings.
Oklahoma (20-10) started Robert Tasin started on the bump. Tasin tossed four innings and gave up two five hits. Tasin also surrendered both of OSU’s solo home runs. Tasin struck out seven Cowboys.
The Cowboys were aggressive at times both at the plate and on the bases.
“There’s certain parts of innings where you want to be aggressive that you want to try and create some offense. There’s parts of our batting order that is definitely a necessity for us,” Holliday said. “Some of our kids are good runners and we look to use their speed when we can.”
Green finished the night going 3 for 5 with a home run and Arakawa went 2 for 4 and also had a homer.
This season Oklahoma State has kept things interesting with late-inning hits. On Tuesday night in Norman the Cowboys started the game ready to go. Green led off the second inning with a solo home run to right field for a 1-0 lead. Just two batters later Arakawa imitated Green with a solo shot just inside the right field foul pole for a 2-0 advantage. Green and Arakawa’s home runs were their first homers of the season.
“We just stayed with our approaches and got the job done,” Green said.
Oklahoma responded in the bottom of the third inning when Craig Aikin started off the inning with a walk. Aikin was hit to third base after Hunter Haley sent a hit to right field. Aikin finally reached home after the ball got behind Green, who was at the plate, to pull to 2-1.
Oklahoma State added another run in the top of the sixth inning when Arakawa drove in Cornell, base runner for Dustin Williams. Arakawa stepped to the plate with the bases loaded and one out. Arakawa hit into a fielder’s choice but was able to extend the Cowboys’ lead.
Oklahoma State will now start prepping for a Big 12 series against Texas Tech in Stillwater beginning at 7 p.m. Friday.
“Hopefully we’re getting on a little roll here and everybody is contributing all throughout the lineup,” Arakawa said.