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Oklahoma Sports

April 2, 2013

Bedlam series raises bar for Sooners on the diamond

(Continued)

NORMAN, Okla. —

They have. Saturday’s loss to Kansas ended the Sooners’ 13-game winning streak, but it was their second double-digit winning streak of the season.

Consistency has been the key to the run that has put OU atop the conference standings. One of the reasons for it is that the first-year players haven’t been overwhelmed by anything.

“I think this group of freshman will handle themselves as well as any freshmen group that’s represented this program because of their experience to this point,” Golloway said.

However, there’s a difference between playing a game in front of 1,200 fans and the kind of crowds that emerge for rivalry games.

“I still think the bigger games are tougher. You play these games — even though they are really important at the time — you play them to handle the bigger games down the road — the Big 12 tournament, the NCAA tournament and, hopefully, God willing, in Omaha,” Golloway added. “It’s all part of the process and it’s all part of the growing and the growth they go through as individuals and performing in front of crowds.”

What kind of crowd Bedlam draws tonight remains to be seen. Typically, at least 2,000 flock to L. Dale Mitchell Park for this game. However, temperatures in the low 40s and a 70 percent chance of rain aren’t typically part of the April weather forecast. They are tonight. Just getting the game in the books is going to require a break from Mother Nature.

OU doesn’t need this game to get washed away. Games like tonight’s and the weekend series at Texas are pivotal parts of the season. They bring emotional challenges that cannot be simulated elsewhere.

The veterans have made sure the newcomers understand what’s coming.

“We’re playing Oklahoma State and Texas, and they’ve been preaching about the importance of these games,” second baseman Hector Lorenzana said. “I can’t wait for it. It’s gonna be awesome.”

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