The Norman Transcript

OU Sports

April 17, 2014

Sooners hoping to keep momentum of marathon victory

NORMAN — Practice was brief Wednesday afternoon at L. Dale Mitchell Park. Rest was more important than work after what Oklahoma had gone through the previous night.

The 12-9, 18-inning victory over Oklahoma State, which didn’t end until about 12:30 a.m. Wednesday, provided some adrenaline for a team in desperate need of it.

“We needed something good to happen,” OU coach Pete Hughes said. “Despite the way it came to us, it was worth it in the end. Those are the kinds of wins that you can use to leapfrog and build momentum with.”

The win snapped a four-game losing streak and unleashed the shackles from an offensive slump that goes all the way back to March.

The Sooners (24-14, 4-5 Big 12) were hitting just .233 in the 13 games leading up to Bedlam game. Against the Cowboys, OU was 18 for 68. But six of those hits were for extra base, including a grand slam home run by Austin O’Brien and a solo shot by Kolbey Carpenter.

Invigorating the lineup is something Hughes has tried to do for weeks. Inserting Carpenter at second base for the first time this season provided a jolt.

Carpenter only had 36 at-bats prior to Tuesday night. He went 3 for 8 with a homer and the game-winning RBI in the top of the 18th inning.

“It feels good to have the opportunity to get in there and help the team win,” Carpenter said.

He’ll have a spot in the lineup when the Sooners face West Virginia (17-15, 2-6) at 6 p.m. today at L. Dale Mitchell Park.

“Here’s a guy that hasn’t been playing as much as he did last year and could’ve gotten caught up in himself,” Hughes said. “He never lost sight of the team concept, which prepared him to be successful in this opportunity we’ve given him recently.”

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