Big East

Offense Explodes to Big 12 Title Game

May 28, 2016

OKLAHOMA CITY – The West Virginia University baseball team’s offense exploded as the Mountaineers cruised into the Phillips Big 12 Championship title game with an 11-1 victory over Oklahoma in a seven inning affair in the semifinal contest at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark on Saturday.

WVU (36-21) is making its first conference title game appearance since 1996, as a member of the Big East Conference, and its 10th championship game appearance in school history.

Sunday’s tournament championship game will take place at 2 p.m. ET/1 p.m. CT in Oklahoma City and is televised regionally on FOX Sports Net. WVU will play the winner of this afternoon’s semifinal game between third-seeded TCU and No. 7 Texas.

Sophomore hurler Conner Dotson (7-4) pitched a solid contest, giving up one unearned run on four hits in 6.2 innings to pick up his seventh win of the year. Dotson fanned nine Sooners, one shy of tying the most strikeouts by a Mountaineer in the Big 12 Championship, and walked four in 118 pitches thrown. Jackson Sigman completed the last two outs as the Mountaineers punched their ticket to the school’s first Big 12 Baseball Championship final appearance.
Sophomore designated hitter Kyle Davis hammered his 10th home run of the season and his second of the championship to lead the Mountaineer offense. He had four RBIs for the second consecutive day and added three hits. Both totals tie program records in the Big 12 Championship, with Davis’ team-best RBI mark set yesterday and his hit total matching Ryan McBroom’s in 2014.
Junior catcher Ray Guerrini and freshman shortstop Jimmy Galusky each recorded a pair of hits and scored two runs each in the contest. Freshman second baseman Cole Austin and senior center fielder KC Huth also tallied two runs each in the game.

West Virginia set a school Big 12 Championship record with 11 runs scored on 11 hits and one error.

Oklahoma (30-27-1) jumped out to a one-run lead in the first inning, but the Mountaineers quickly responded with three runs in the second inning.

Austin’s sac fly to right field scored Jackson Cramer. Huth and Kyle Gray would then reach base on a fielder’s choice and walk. Jimmy Galusky recorded a fielder’s choice RBI, allowing Ray Guerrini to score the go-ahead run. Davis roped a double down the right field line, scoring Huth to give WVU a 3-1 edge.
Oklahoma jammed the bases in the third with a pair of walks and a single, but Dotson escaped the threat as right fielder Darius Hill caught a deep fly ball in right center.
The Mountaineers extended their lead after scoring three runs on a two-out rally in the fourth inning. Galusky singled and on the next at bat, Davis hammered his 10th homer of the year to put WVU up by four. Hill recorded a hit up the middle and scored after Ivan Vera reached due to a throwing miscue from OU’s third baseman.
Kyle Gray executed the squeeze play to score Austin in the fifth, extending the Mountaineer lead to six at 7-1. In the seventh inning, West Virginia strung together four runs on five hits and capitalized on two OU errors to push the Mountaineer lead to 10 and put the 10-run rule into effect.
Sunday’s championship game will air on Fox Sports Net. The ROOT Sports Pittsburgh alternate channel will also air the game live while ROOT Sports Pittsburgh will air the game on tape delay beginning at 7 p.m. ET. Fans should check local listings for the appropriate channel in their area. On the radio, Jeff Culhane will call the action on the Mountaineer Sports Network from IMG on various affiliates throughout the state. The radio broadcast can also be found online at WVUsports.com or on the TuneIn Radio App and the Mountaineer Gameday App. Live stats can be found at Big12Sports.com. Additional behind-the-scenes updates and notes from Oklahoma City can be found on social media by following and connecting with the team at @WVUBaseball on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
NOTES: WVU improved to 36-21, the most wins in a single season in coach Randy Mazey’s four years and the most since WVU won 37 in 2009 … WVU improved to 6-5 at the Big 12 Championship, 3-0 at this year’s tournament and 8-8 all-time against Oklahoma … The Mountaineers advance to the Big 12 Championship Game for the first time in program history and reach a conference tournament championship game for the 10th time in team history and first since 1996 … West Virginia has won 17 of its last 20 games … WVU’s 11 runs are the most its scored at the Big 12 Championship … Sophomore Kyle Davis hit his second home run of the championship and WVU’s third, the most home runs for the Mountaineers at the Big 12 Championship … Davis had four RBIs for the second consecutive day, tying his own WVU record for most RBIs in a game at the Big 12 Championship … Davis’ three hits is tied for the most in a game at the Big 12 Championship for WVU, along with Ryan McBroom in 2014 vs. Kansas … Sophomore Conner Dotson had nine strikeouts, one shy of matching the WVU record for most in a Big 12 Championship game.

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