Big inning does in Leathernecks in 17-2 loss at No. 16 Oklahoma
Courtesy: Brock Wissmiller  
Release: Friday 02/20/2009
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Courtesy: Brock Wissmiller/Western Illinois Athletics
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Cole Waddell picked up two hits in the season opening loss for the...

NORMAN, Okla. - The season opener for the Western Illinois baseball team resulted in a 17-2 loss at the hands of No. 16 Oklahoma, at L. Dale Mitchell Park, Friday afternoon.

The Leathernecks’ (0-1) starter, Austin Brough, found himself in trouble in the bottom of the second, after allowing a leadoff triple to the Sooners’ (1-0) left fielder Casey Johnson. The southpaw got a fly out to left that was too shallow to score a run, and followed that with a strikeout and ground out to work out of the early jam.

A scoreless game was broken open in the third inning as Bryant Hernandez led off the bottom half with a solo homer to left. After a double and a pop-out, Aaron Baker put two more on the board on a long ball to right.

The Leathernecks answered the following inning by putting two on the board. Drew Laidig collected his first double of the year to start the rally. With one out, Tyler Metcalf picked up an RBI with a single to right field. Darren Spicer doubled for his first hit and first RBI in a Western uniform to plate Metcalf.

Western threatened the following inning as Cole Waddell led of with a single to center. He would be stranded at second after Cooper Stewart advanced him on a sacrifice bunt for the first out of the inning, followed by a strikeout and ground out.

A RBI-single in the fifth and RBI-triple in the sixth built the Sooner lead to 5-2. OU looked to build on its lead but Brock Simon pitched out of a bases loaded jam coming in with two away in the bottom of the sixth.

In the top of the sixth, Waddell reached on a walk with two away, but could not advance any further than first.

Oklahoma broke the game wide open in the seventh, by putting nine runs on the board, highlighted by a base loaded double from Tyler Ogle and a two-run homer from J.T. Wise, stretching the lead to 14-2.

“They were playing for one run in the nine run inning,” said Western Illinois head coach Stan Hyman. “Cooper, who is our leader out there, made a bad decision by going for the lead runner and we turned that into a big inning. Cooper knows that and I know that. That’s something we can’t do. They were looking to just get an insurance run at that point and we opened the flood gates.”

A three-run homer for the Sooners in the eighth closed out the scoring, 17-2.

In his first career-start, Brough worked 4.1 innings, allowing four runs while striking out three and walking none.

“The positives that come out of it is that Austin Brough, who was literally the 25th man (on the roster) a year ago and who coach (Tom) Radz really believed could turn into somebody special, really proved today that he is going to be a big factor in our success this season,” Hyman added. “He threw well for the four-innings plus that he was in there.”

The offense was led by Waddell and Laidig with two hits apiece. Collecting the only extra base hits for the Leathernecks were Laidig and Spicer, while Metcalf and Spicer picked an RBI each.

Western and Oklahoma resume their four-game set Saturday, February 21, at Noon, with a doubleheader.

WIU Baseball


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