The Norman Transcript

Sports

April 26, 2014

Sooners playing for momentum

NORMAN — Oklahoma’s primary goal at this point of the season is to wrap up a Big 12 title. The 12th-ranked Sooners have five conference games left and without any help from Texas will need to go 4-1 to wrap up that title.

But that’s all a problem for next week. First, the Sooners have a three-game set against Alabama-Birmingham that begins at 2 p.m. today with a doubleheader at Marita Hynes Field.

The series will wrap up an eight-game homestand for OU, which began last weekend when the Sooners took two of three from Texas to seize control of the conference race. They followed that up with a pair of wins over Central Arkansas and North Texas and will try to end things on a high note against UAB before a trip to Arkansas on Wednesday,

Since Big 12 play began, the Sooners have been rolling. They easily dispatched Iowa State and Kansas in a three-game series before taking two of three from Baylor to turn the Big 12 race into a two-team heat with Texas. Hosting the Longhorns last week, they crossed one team off that list and gave themselves control of their own destiny.

While that won’t be on the line this weekend, the Sooners are looking for a strong home showing to ensure that they continue to peak heading into the stretch run of the season. The postseason is just two weeks away, and every game counts in the Sooners’ pursuit of the right to host for as long as possible.

OU (36-10, 11-2) sits at No. 15 in the latest edition of the NCAA’s RPI rankings that determine hosting responsibilities. The Sooners’ road to the national title last year didn’t leave the state of Oklahoma, and coach Patty Gasso’s squad plans to do everything it can to try and earn that right again this season.

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