Oklahoma moves to 13-0, best start
No. 2 Sooners top No. 14 California to set school record
SAN DIEGO, Calif. --- For the first time in program history, the Oklahoma baseball team is 13-0 to start off a season. The No. 2 Sooners posted a 5-3 win against No. 14 Cal on Saturday in the USD Tournament at Tony Gwynn Stadium.
“I am proud of this program and all the players that have helped build it,” said OU Head Coach Sunny Golloway. “To make history today is a special thing. We will enjoy it tonight and I promise we will come out hungry and ready to go tomorrow.”
The Sooners wasted little time in taking an early advantage with a run scored in the first. Max White led off the game with a double to the gap in right center and moved to third on a failed pickoff by Cal starter Justin Jones. Erik Ross then plated White off a sacrifice squeeze, his 11th RBI of the season.
Cal countered quickly in the bottom half of the first, almost duplicating the Sooner run in the top half. Tony Renda led off the Bears’ day with a double to right center and scored after a throwing error by OU starting pitcher on Austin Booker’s bunt single. Booker advanced to third on the error and scored on a sacrifice fly to take a 2-1 lead.
Buechele two-run single in the third inning allowed OU to regain a lead, it would not relinquish. The All-American finished with a game-high three hits and leads the Big 12 with 21 runs driven in this season after also driving in a pair in yesterday’s victory.
In the sixth inning, some crafty base running from Tyler Ogle added an insurance run for the Sooners. Ogle stole second and Jones compounded things with his second error, followed by another thrwoing error by first baseman Devin Rodriguez. Cal’s four errors marked third straight game that a Sooner opponent committed the same amount of defensive miscues.
Smith (2-0) gave the Sooners 7 1/3 innings in his third OU start and was relieved by Jack Mayfield after he surrendered the third run of the game. Mayfield ran into trouble with two straight walks but battled out of the jam with a strikeout of Darrel Matthews to end the bases-loaded threat. Mayfield remained in the game in the ninth to record his third save of the season.
The Sooners previously started 12-0 back in 1998. The 13-game winning streak in 2011 is also tied for the best under head coach Sunny Golloway, who led Oklahoma to 13 consecutive victories in 2006.
Saturday’s win was the Sooners’ first game against a ranked opponent and marked the fourth in five games against the Golden Bears.
Cal dropped to 6-3 with the loss, which was registered by Jones, a 2010 All-American. It was the left-hander’s first loss of the year.
Oklahoma concludes the USD Tournament on Saturday with a noon CT game at San Diego State. The game will be played at Tony Gwynn Stadium and can be heard on the Sooners’ flagship station, KREF 1400 AM.
For more information on OU baseball, visit www.SoonerSports.com.