The Bobcat baseball team concluded its 2017-2018 season opening series against the Oklahoma State Cowboys Sunday, Feb. 18.
While the first game was a disappointing 6-2 loss for the Bobcats, the following two games were more positive and indicative of what the Bobcat faithful should see the rest of this season.
In game one, Nicholas Fraze, sophomore starting pitcher, struck out six batters, while only allowing two runs and one hit. Dylan Paul, senior left-fielder, also went 3-4 on the day. The Bobcats ended up losing the game in late innings, 6-2.
In game two, the Bobcats looked like a different team. Connor Reich, junior starting pitcher, went seven strong innings while only needing 94 pitches to strikeout eight batters and allowed just two hits. The offense came to life this game, scoring 10 runs, led by Jaylen Hubbard, junior third baseman, going 3-5 with two RBI’s and one run. Oklahoma State’s lone run of the game came in the top of the ninth inning, and the Bobcats tied the weekend series 1-1 with a 10-1 victory.
The rubber match Sunday, Feb. 18, came down to the last inning of a 6-5 win by Oklahoma State, but if you ask head coach Ty Harrington, the finale in the series was decided in the bottom of the second inning.
“We scored three, and we had runners on second and third base with one out and a 3-0 count, but we couldn’t score anyone,” Harrington said. “Then all the momentum changes. They get the leadoff guy on (in the third), then the ball rolls through the SS area (with the next batter) and their next guy comes to the plate and hit one out of the park.”
The game finished with a 6-5 Bobcat loss, with the four bobcat pitchers used combining nine hits with six home runs. Offensively, Jared Huber, senior catcher, went 2-2 with one hit and one RBI.
The Bobcats began the season with encouraging signs against a defending power five conference champion, and a lot can be taken from this series and applied to the rest of this young season. The Bobcats will be back in action Tuesday, Feb. 20, when they travel to Rice University to take on the Owls.