As Oklahoma State coach Frank Anderson entered the interview room following a dramatic 1-0 Sooner's win in the Big 12 Tournament opener – as in 9 a.m. opener – he suggested the game was more worthy of prime-time positioning.
“Should have been a 7 o'clock game,” Anderson said. “That's a game people should have seen.”
The tournament bracket fixes game times according to seeding, which placed the No. 4 Sooner's and No. 5 Cowboys in the 9 a.m. slot. But there were discussions about moving the Bedlam matchup to accommodate the local working class – to no avail.
The official attendance for the game was listed at 4,429, which reflects tickets sold. Crowd estimates put the actual attendance at 3,000.
Those at The Brick were treated to a pitching delight, with OSU's Andrew Heaney battling the OU duo of Dillon Overton and Steven Overt through 8 1/2 scoreless innings. There were 18 combined strikeouts, several defensive gems and a walk-off homer by the Sooner's' Garrett Carey.
“That game right there,” Anderson said, “9 o'clock in the morning are you kidding me? That's one of the best games ever in this tournament.”
OU coach Sunny Golloway didn't disagree.
“You're going to be hard-pressed to go back and find a (better) duel of quality pitches,” Golloway said.
In his first Bedlam taste of this season, Overton didn't make it out of the third inning, allowing six hits, two walks and two runs in Game 2 of the regular season series, an eventual 3-2 Cowboys win.
Wednesday, Overton was sharp, striking out eight and allowing six hits — all singles — in 7 1/3 shutout innings.
“Today my changeup was working really well,” Overton said. “I had a lot of movement on it and could throw it when behind, ahead or even in the count. It didn't really matter what I threw – everything worked.”
The spotlight of the Bedlam series allows for dramatic moments and memories.
Carey provided both Wednesday, delivering a walk-off home run in OU's 1-0 win.
“We talk to our guys about what they'll be remembered for,” Golloway said. “People remember what you do in Bedlam games, and they remember what you do in the postseason.”
Golloway said he called shortstop Caleb Bushyhead on Tuesday night, trying to plant a seed for such a memory.
“I asked Bushyhead what he wanted to be remembered for as a senior,” Golloway said. “I think that's what really hit me as I watched Garrett round the bases. I thought, ‘Everyone is going to remember Garrett Carey and what he did.'
“It's what's so special about Bedlam. It's why kids go to Oklahoma State and Oklahoma to be in this setting.”
With one on and nobody out in the seventh inning, Randy McCurry hit a screamer up the middle that seemed destined to spark a needed rally.
Instead, OU second baseman Jack Mayfield ended the threat, spearing the shot with a backhand, glove flipping to second and starting a crucial double play.
In a pitcher's duel where hits were sparse and runs were nearly nonexistent, Mayfield's play might have altered the course of OU's 1-0 Bedlam win.
“To me, the play of the game was the Mayfield dive right there,” Anderson said. “To flip it with his glove, you'll see that tonight.”
Despite some recent arm issues, Oklahoma State left-hander Kyle Ottoson is available to pitch at some point this week.
Ottoson hasn't thrown since a brief outing on May 9 against Ohio State. He is 4-7 with a 3.86 ERA this season.
“(He can throw) maybe a batter or an inning,” Anderson said. “But he won't throw for an extended time.”
TURLEY GETS BY WITHOUT HIS BEST
Baylor starter Josh Turley felt good while warming up in the bullpen before the Bears' game against Kansas State.
But once he was on the mound against the Wildcats, he had an uneasy feeling.
“Really nothing was working,” Turley said. “My command was a little off. I didn't have a very good feeling about my pitches today but baseball's a funny game like that.”
It is funny, because despite not being comfortable with his stuff, Turley allowed just one run in seven innings, with the run coming with Baylor already holding a 6-0 lead.
Baylor coach Steve Smith said if the game would've continued into the eighth, he would've taken Turley and catcher Josh Ludy out of the game.
CHILDRESS PRAISES DUNCAN
As Kansas pitcher Frank Duncan made his way to the postgame interview room after the Jayhawks 10-4 loss to Texas A&M, Aggies coach Rob Childress stopped Duncan.
“Great job today,” Childress told him. “You've got a heck of a slider.”
Duncan thanked the coach for taking the time.
“It means a lot,” Duncan told Childress.
Duncan allowed seven runs in 5 2/3 innings but just one came before a four-run fifth.
In the interview room a few minutes later, Kansas coach Ritch Price also praised his sophomore.
“I can't tell you how proud of him I am,” Price said. “When he first stepped foot on our campus last year, he was throwing 82-83 mph and now is pitching somewhere between 89 and 92 mph and he was become a four-pitch guy.”