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Bedlam baseball: Third of three consecutive Cowboys' home runs just eludes Sooners' outfielder

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Oklahoma starter Nathan Wiles settled down after giving up three solo homers in first inning of a 5-1 loss to Oklahoma State on Friday in Tulsa. [JOEY JOHNSON/for the Tulsa World]
Oklahoma starter Nathan Wiles settled down after giving up three solo homers in first inning of a 5-1 loss to Oklahoma State on Friday in Tulsa. [JOEY JOHNSON/for the Tulsa World]

TULSA — After watching Oklahoma State teammates Christian Funk and Colin Simpson hit back-to-back home runs in the first inning Friday, it looked like Andrew Navigato might come up just short.

But Oklahoma right fielder Brady Harlan drifted back along the warning track, it became apparent Navigato had a chance.

Navigato’s ball just cleared Harlan’s glove after the Sooners’ outfielder didn’t jump for the ball.

His home run landed in the Oklahoma State bullpen, sending the Cowboys well on their way to an eventual 5-1 win at ONEOK Field.

Wiles settles in

Outside of the Cowboys’ four solo home runs, Oklahoma State wasn’t able to get much offense going against Sooners starter Nathan Wiles.

Wiles pitched seven innings, allowing just three singles apart from the home runs.

He was helped by double plays in four consecutive innings from the third through the sixth innings.

The Cowboys had just one runner in scoring position against Wiles — in the third when the first two runners reached base before a strikeout and the first of the string of double plays ended the threat.

Overall, the Sooners turned five double plays, tying a school record. The Sooners had accomplished the feat three times before, with the last coming in 1985.

Holliday recalls combative Bedlams of the past

OSU coach Josh Holliday likes the fire he sees from his team in Bedlam matchups, even if the ones he experienced as a player — or as a fan when his father, Tom, was coaching the Cowboys — were more hostile.

“We used to play a five-game series,” Holliday said. “Five times in six days, I believe it was. It was different because it was so much. It was too much, to be honest. That’s probably why these videos are popping up about the teams fighting back in the day.

“You put really competitive athletes in a competitive environment five times in six days, and someone’s gonna get irritated. And back then, it was more acceptable to get hostile.”

Up next

The teams square off in the second game of the Big 12 Bedlam series at 7 p.m. Saturday at Oklahoma City’s Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark.

Earlier in the day, the park will host the Class 3A high school championship game.

It will be the first Bedlam game in Oklahoma City since 2017.

A scheduling issue led to the Brick not hosting a Bedlam game last season with the game originally scheduled for Oklahoma City moved instead to Stillwater. That led to this season’s schedule which features one game each in Tulsa, Oklahoma City and Norman.

Sophomore righthander Cade Cavalli (5-2, 3.10 ERA) is slated for the start on the mound for the Sooners. Cavalli has missed his last two turns through the rotation with what was described as a “stress reaction” in his forearm.

Lefthander Parker Scott (2-1, 1.65) is expected to start on the mound for Oklahoma State.

Ryan Aber

Ryan Aber has worked for The Oklahoman since 2006, covering high schools, the Oklahoma City RedHawks, the Oklahoma City Barons and OU football recruiting. An Oklahoma City native, Aber graduated from Northeastern State. Before joining The... Read more ›

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