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Nicklaus' ninth-inning homer lifts Oklahoma over Kansas 8-6 for spot in Big 12 Tournament title game


NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — Jackson Nicklaus hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the ninth inning and top-seeded Oklahoma scored the final eight runs in an 8-6 victory over seventh-seeded Kansas on Friday to advance to the Big 12 Tournament title game.

Oklahoma (37-18) will play in the championship game on Saturday.

Nicklaus homered to right field on a 2-2 pitch from Cooper Moore after Anthony Mackenzie led off the inning with a single.

Kansas (31-23) jumped in front with four runs in the top of the first. John Nett walked to lead off and Ben Hartl and Kodey Shojinaga followed with singles to load the bases. Jake English doubled in a pair, Lenny Ashby had a sacrifice fly and Collier Cranford added an RBI single.

English drove in a run with a ground out and Ashby had an RBI single to give the Jayhawks a 6-0 lead after two innings.

Oklahoma didn't get anything going against Kansas starter J'Briell Easley until the bottom of the fifth. Easley piled up 11 strikeouts through 4 2/3 shutout innings before Jaxon Willits hit a two-run home run to get the Sooners on the scoreboard.

Easley gave way to Kolby Dougan after Easton Carmichael singled following Willits' blast. Dougan issued back-to-back walks to load the bases and Nicklaus singled to center field to drive in two. Kendall Pettis had an RBI single to make it 6-5, but Nicklaus was thrown out at third on the play to end the inning.

Ryan Lambert (4-0) notched the win for Oklahoma, striking out the only two batters he faced with two runners on base and one out in the top of the ninth.

Moore (1-4) was saddled with the loss, allowing two runs on three hits in an inning.


AP college sports: https://apnews.com/hub/college-sports