March 29, 2002
NORMAN, Okla. -
Baylor first baseman Mike Huggins came through with his fourth game-winning hit of the year Friday night as the 10th-ranked Bears came from behind to beat No. 17 Oklahoma 5-4 at L. Dale Mitchell Park.
The Bears (20-9, 9-4 Big 12) scored two in the top of the ninth inning for their seventh last at-bat win of the year. Oklahoma (16-9, 4-3 Big 12) threatened in the bottom of the ninth, putting a runner on third with two outs, but closer Kyle Edens got Jason Fransz to ground out to second for the final out and picked up his seventh save of the year.
Baylor got a tremendous effort from starter Steven White (4-0), who threw the first eight innings and allowed four runs (three earned) on eight hits. White struck out seven batters, one short of his season high, but gave up six walks as well.
Baylor took a 2-0 lead in the top of the third. After one away, Tim Hartshorn hit a ground-rule double to right-center, and Paul Richmond drove home Hartshorn with a triple into right-center. Chris Durbin grounded out to third to drive in Richmond.
Oklahoma tied the game at 2-2 in the fourth on back-to-back home runs. With two outs in the inning, designated hitter Luke Alexander hit his first home run of the year, a shot to right field on an 0-2 count. Catcher Spencer Wyman followed two pitches later with an almost identical shot to right field to tie the game.
That score held into the bottom of the seventh, when a single, a passed ball and a two-out double by OU's Jason Franz added up to a 3-2 Oklahoma lead.
That lead lasted all of a half-inning. Chris Durbin's lead-off bloop double in the eighth chased Sooner starter Mark Roberts out of the game. Oklahoma brought in left-handed reliever David Purcey (0-2), who promptly gave up an RBI single to center field to Ross Bennett that re-tied the game at 3-3.
In the bottom of the eighth, Steven White
allowed a leadoff double to right-center by right fielder Matt Arkison. Arkison caught his spikes rounding second base, breaking his leg, and fell to the ground in pain. Durbin picked up the ball in right-center and threw to second baseman Paul Witt
, whose relay throw to third base eluded Michael Griffin
and White, who was backing up the play. The throw made its way into the Oklahoma dugout. With the dead ball called, OU sent in Greg Kish to pinch run at second. Kish, then, was sent home on the two-base throwing error by Witt, making the score 4-3 Sooners.
Once more, however, the Bears tied things up. Trey Webb led off the inning with a single to right, and Purcey hit Witt with a pitch to put two men on with nobody out. Hartshorn attempted to sacrifice the runners over, but bunted too hard and Webb was forced at third. Richmond hit the first pitch he saw into left field to score Witt from second and tie the game, that hit knocked Purcey out of the game in favor of right-hander Evan Greusel.
Greusel struck out Durbin for the second out, but Mike Huggins came through with a first-pitch single through the right side that skipped under the diving OU first baseman and into right field to drive in Hartshorn.
Each of the first four batters in the Baylor line-up (Hartshorn, Richmond, Durbin and Huggins) had two hits. Richmond drove in two runs and Hartshorn scored twice on the evening.
The Bears and Sooners continue the series Saturday at 2 p.m., then wrap things up Sunday at 1 p.m.