Big 12 Baseball

Four Takeaways from Day Three of the Big 12 Baseball Tournament

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What a day it was in Arlington for day three of the Big 12 Conference Baseball Tournament. We saw a total of four Big 12 games on Thursday and it was non-stop, jam-packed action from morning until the late-night hours.

As we continue to make our way through the tourney, I have a few thoughts from the second full day of Big 12 baseball action. But first, here are the final scores from Thursday’s games.

#9 TCU: 9, #6 Kansas State: 4

#1 Oklahoma: 7, #7 Kansas: 5

#10 Texas Tech: 10, #5 Cincinnati: 5

#8 UCF: 7, #2 Oklahoma State: 6


Did Kansas State Do Enough?

After missing the postseason last year, Kansas State head coach Pete Hughes let the entire world know how he felt about his team not getting in. He was upset and rightfully so. Well, here we are just a few days before selection time and Kansas State is in a familiar position.

They finished with a 15-15 record in conference play and with an RPI in the mid 40’s. Winning a game in the Big 12 tournament was crucial for this team but being eliminated after the first three games wasn’t ideal. Coming into the week Kansas State was definitely one of the many teams on the postseason bubble and now their fate will be in the selection committee’s hands come Monday. It’s not a position I would want to be in if I was Pete Hughes but hopefully, they can get in.

Oklahoma Stays Hot

It doesn’t matter if this team is down by two runs or more because when you have an offense like Oklahoma’s then you ALWAYS have a chance to win a game.

Even when Kansas made a back breaking play like this one, it didn’t faze Oklahoma one bit.

The game turned in the fourth inning. Scott Mudler tied the game and then Jaxon Willits hit a monster two-run blast in the fourth inning and the Sooners never looked back.

This team has won 10 out of their last 11 Big 12 games and is now in the semifinals. With an RPI inside the top 15, the Sooners are already a lock to host a regional, but they still have path to potentially getting a top eight seed if they can win the Big 12 tournament.


Did Cincinnati Do Enough?

Much like Kansas State, the same question could be asked about Cincinnati. Did this team do enough to make the postseason? Their 17-13 record in conference play is great but that RPI of theirs (61) is a blemish on their resume. We all know how much stock the committee puts into the RPI, and you definitely don’t want to be in the 50’s or 60’s come selection day. Before the tournament started had the Bearcats as one of the first four teams out and I am not sure if winning one game in the Big 12 tournament was enough to secure a spot in the field of 64.


UCF Wins a Wild One in Extras

Why does the last game of the day always have to be chaotic? It’s past 1 a.m. and I couldn’t take my eyes off this game because it was that damn good. And once again, the Cowboys got off to a roaring start as they got off to a 4-0 lead.

But the Knights weren’t going to let that phase them one bit as they put up four runs of their own in the second inning to tie the game.

And if Wednesday’s performance wasn’t enough, Carson Benge came up big once again on Thursday with this solo home run that gave Oklahoma State the lead.

Yet once again, UCF responded thanks to Matt Cedarburg’s two-run blast to put the Knights on top in the seventh inning.

In the bottom of the eighth, Oklahoma State’s Tyler Wulfert tied the game at six with a crazy RBI double.

Neither team would score in the ninth and it was off to extras. Luckily, we didn’t have to wait too long for a run as AJ Nessler put UCF back in front in the top of the tenth. Later in that same inning, Dominic Castellano ended up being the man to close things out for UCF.

This was a big win for the Knights as they advanced to the semifinals and are one step close to guaranteeing themselves a postseason spot.

Friday’s Games

#7 Kansas vs #9 TCU (9:00 AM CT)

#1 Oklahoma vs Winner of Kansas/TCU (12:30 PM CT)

#2 Oklahoma State vs #10 Texas Tech (4:00 PM CT)

#8 UCF vs Winner of Oklahoma State/Texas Tech (7:30 PM CT)

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