Strong Pitching Carries Sooners to Win over Nebraska

Thursday, May 26th 2011, 12:21 pm
By: News On 6

Originally Published: Apr 22, 2011 10:6 PM CDT

Corey DeMoss
Oklahoma Sports Staff Writer

NORMAN, Okla. – Michael Rocha pitched a complete game and led the Oklahoma baseball team to a 9-2 blowout of Nebraska in their series opener Friday.

Rocha held Nebraska (25-15, 5-8) to just eight hits on the night and did not walk any batters. The Sooners’ (28-11, 8-7) offense gave him plenty of run support, starting in the first inning.

Garrett Buechele started the scoring with an RBI single, but OU blew the game open in the middle innings. Still up 1-0, OU scored four runs in the third thanks in large part to a three-run home run by Tyler Ogle. That began a string of three straight innings in which the Sooners scored.

Buechele delivered another RBI in the fourth, and Eric Ross drove two home with a single in the fifth. Ross later came around to score on a wild pitch to give OU its ninth run of the game, and that was all it needed.

Rocha’s only struggles came in the fourth inning, when he allowed back-to-back RBI doubles by Cody Asche and Kash Kalkowski. Rocha did not allow another runner past second for the rest of the night.

While the Sooners were able to get through the first game in the series without using their bullpen, the Cornhuskers were forced to use a total of five pitchers. Starter Matt Freeman came with a loss after giving up five runs on seven hits in only two innings.

The Sooners now have recovered from a rough stretch in which they lost three of four games – including one to Dallas Baptist – by winning their last two. They will continue their series against Nebraska at 2 p.m. Saturday.