MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The West Virginia University baseball team completes its final road trip of the 2022 regular season with a three-game series at No. 21 Oklahoma, from May 13-15, in Norman.
First pitch of Friday night’s series opener at L. Dale Mitchell Park is set for 7:30 p.m. ET, while Saturday and Sunday’s games are billed for 3 p.m., and 1 p.m., respectively.
Fans can follow all the action with live stats, found on WVUsports.com. Additionally, Friday and Sunday’s games can be seen on SoonerSports.tv, while Saturday’s game will air on Bally Sports Oklahoma. All three games also can be heard on the Mountaineer Sports Network on 100.9 WZST-FM, as well as various affiliates throughout the state, the WVU Gameday app, the free Varsity Network app and WVUsports.com.
Junior right-handed pitcher Jacob Watters (2-5, 5.33 ERA) gets the start for WVU to begin the series on Friday, while sophomore left-hander Ben Hampton (6-4, 4.66 ERA) goes on Saturday. OU counters with left-hander Jake Bennett (4-3, 3.97 ERA) on Friday and right-hander David Sandlin (5-2, 5.58 ERA) on Saturday, while Sunday’s matchup is to be announced.
The Mountaineers (29-18, 10-8 Big 12) hold a 12-16 mark against Oklahoma in the all-time series. Last season, the Sooners took the series in Morgantown, 2-1.
Of note, this weekend marks the first time WVU travels to Norman since March 23-24, 2018.
Last time out, West Virginia earned a 9-1 win over Pitt on May 10, at Wagener Field at Monongalia County Ballpark in Morgantown. With the win, WVU clinched the Backyard Brawl season series over the Panthers.
Freshman right-hander Aidan Major earned the win on the mound after tossing six, no-hit innings with eight strikeouts. In all, four Mountaineer pitchers combined to allow just two hit on the evening.
Several Mountaineers have garnered various accolades and recognition this week. On May 9, Watters was named one of Collegiate Baseball Newspaper’s National Players of the Week after his 15-strikeout performance against then-No. 18 Texas on May 7. Additionally, redshirt junior catcher/infielder Dayne Leonard was named the Co-Big 12 Newcomer of the Week after hitting .400 with a home run and six RBI in four games last week.
Off the field, sophomore outfielder Braden Barry and sophomore infielder Nathan Blasick were named to the Academic All-District 2 First Team by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) on May 12. It marked the first Mountaineer duo to be selected to the team in the same year since Lee Fritz and Zac Cline in 2003.
West Virginia enters the weekend ranked No. 2 nationally in stolen bases, with 143, while junior outfielder Victor Scott II sits at No. 4 in the nation with 36 stolen bags this spring. Both figures are single-season program records.
Led by 10th-year coach Randy Mazey, WVU is the only Big 12 squad without a three-game losing streak this season. Mazey is 292-226 with the Mountaineers since taking over in 2013.
Sophomore catcher McGwire Holbrook leads the team with a .336 average at the plate this season. Senior outfielder Austin Davis (.328), Leonard (.311) and Barry (.308) also are hitting above .300 on the year.
Oklahoma is led by coach Skip Johnson, who is in his fifth season in Norman. The Sooners are 29-17 on the year, including 11-7 in Big 12 play.
Last weekend, OU took a series at TCU. After dropping the opener, Oklahoma responded with back-to-back wins to claim the three-game set.
The Sooners are ranked as high as No. 21 in this week’s Perfect Game poll. The squad also was placed at No. 24 by Baseball America.
Blake Robertson’s .367 average is tops on the club, while Peyton Graham leads in the power department with 12 home runs and 45 RBI. On the mound, Bennett has issued 80 strikeouts on just 15 walks in 70.1 innings, while right-hander Trevin Michael has tallied seven saves.