Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Baseball: Five Sooners Honored In Big 12 Postseason Awards

NORMAN, Okla. -- The No. 25 Oklahoma baseball team had five honorees on the All-Big 12 teams announced on Tuesday, including first team member Max White (utility), who ranks in the top 10 in the league in several offensive categories after starting in left field, center field, third base and first base in 2012.

Senior Erik Ross (outfield) and redshirt sophomore Jordan John (starting pitcher) were named to the second team while sophomore Dillon Overton (starting pitcher) was named honorable mention and Hunter Lockwood (1B/C) was voted to the all-freshman team.

It marks the fourth straight season that at least five Sooners were selected by the league's coaches.

White was Big 12 honorable mention in 2010 when he was also named a Freshman All-American. In 2012, he leads the team with 24 multi-hit games (third in Big 12) and 17 multi-RBI games (first in Big 12). His team-best 52 RBI is a career high and also ranks second in the Big 12 Conference. White also ranks third in the league in hits (75), fourth in batting average (.355) and doubles (16), and seventh in total bases (101). He has hit safely in 39 of the last 49 games, including an impressive career-high 11-game hitting streak that included eight straight multi-hit games and 19 RBI.

John collected his second league honor (2011 all-freshman team) as he ranks second in the Big 12 with four complete games, including three in conference play (Big 12 best). John also ranks third in the league with eight wins, fourth with 102.2 innings pitched, sixth in strikeouts (92), seventh in ERA (2.28) and seventh in saves (4). John has lasted at least seven innings in all eight of his starts since moving from the bullpen to the rotation and had a streak of three straight complete games end with 8 2/3 innings against Baylor (no-decision) on May 12.

Ross earned his first honor and leads OU with 15 stolen bases despite missing seven games due to injury. He returned for the Kansas State series with four hits and hit a team-best .347 in Big 12 play (fifth in the conference). Ross has reached base safely in 42 of the 49 games played and hit safely in 37 of those contests.

Overton was also named honorable mention last season and repeated with that same honor in 2012. The lefty is fourth in the Big 12 in strikeouts (94) and 31st in the nation. He also ranks sixth in the Big 12 in innings pitched (96.2) and fourth in complete games after going the distance against West Virginia, Texas Tech and TCU.

Lockwood is tied for the Big 12 lead with 11 home runs after smacking two in the season finale on Saturday, his second two-homer game of the season. He started 48 of his 51 games played at four different positions, primarily at first base. Lockwood is second among all Sooners with 11 multi-RBI games and second with 14 multi-hit games.

The Sooners, seeded fourth, will battle No. 5 seed Oklahoma State on Wednesday at 9 a.m. in the first game of the 2012 Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark in downtown Oklahoma City.

OU ended the regular season at 35-21 and won five of the eight Big 12 series to finish fourth in the Big 12 standings with a 13-10 record. The Sooners won 20 of the last 27 games, including 13 of the last 19 conference games to finish in the top four in the league standings for the fourth straight year (second in 2009 and 2010 and third in 2011).

The Big 12 Championship returns to the double-elimination format for the second straight year. From 2005-2010, the conference's postseason tournament was operating under a two-division, pool play format in each of the past five seasons.

/// Sooners PR
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