After a strong year that arguably exceeded expectations, the Oklahoma State baseball season has come to an end after a 5-1 loss to Arizona in the College World Series.
OSU went into Friday’s game only needing one win to advance to the Championship series, but the Wildcats were able to win back-to-back games to send the Cowboys home from Omaha.
Just like in Friday’s game, the Wildcats were able to jump out to an early lead. Only this time it was a bit more shocking, seeing it came against Big 12 Pitcher of the Year Thomas Hatch.
Cody Ramer got things started for Arizona with a double, but was then able to steal third on an indecision by OSU catcher Collin Theroux. Ramer was quickly able to cross home for the first score of the game on a fielder’s choice, but Ryan Aguilar put Arizona right back in scoring position with a double to left center on the next at-bat. After Aguilar advanced to third on a wild pitch, Arizona’s Jared Oliva popped up a deep sacrifice fly to put the Wildcats up 2-0 after the first frame.
When a team is rolling, it’s hard to slow them down, and that’s the problem the Cowboys ran into as the runs kept pouring in for Arizona in the second inning.
Louis Boyd knocked in the first run with an RBI double, and Zach Gibbons followed that with an RBI double of his own to score Boyd as the Wildcats held an early 4-0 lead. Arizona nearly added another run, but Jon Littell made a tremendous over the shoulder catch to get Oklahoma State out of the inning.
To follow up his great catch, Littell started off the third with a single, and eventually scored the first OSU run of the game after J.R. Davis smacked a sacrifice fly to the warning track to bring home Littell from third base.
But the Wildcats quickly forced Hatch (2IP, 5H, 4ER) off the mound for Oklahoma State, and Gibbons was able to take advantage in the fourth inning by hitting his third RBI of the game with another double to put the Wildcats up 5-1.
After an offensive start to the game, the two teams slowed down throughout the second half as neither OSU or Arizona went on to record another run. OSU had a runner on second with only one out in the eighth, but Arizona pitcher Kevin Ginkel struck out the next two Cowboy batters to get out of the inning.
The Cowboys also put two runners on with one out in the ninth, but once again nothing came from the rally.
Despite getting moved from lead off hitter to the second slot, OSU’s J.R. Davis had two hits on the day while Hassel, Donnie Walton, Conor Costello, Andrew Rosa and Littell each recorded one as well.