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June 6, 2014

OSU-Irvine notebook

OSU RELIEF: Oklahoma State’s middle relief is outstanding, and closer Brendan McCurry is an All-America-caliber player. McCurry is 5-0 with a 0.39 ERA and 19 saves and middle reliever Vince Wheeland is 10-0 with a 1.53 ERA. The Cowboys’ relievers have combined to go 31-2 with 21 saves. The bullpen has racked up 282 strikeouts in 316 2-3 innings for a 2.39 ERA.

IRVINE STARTERS: The Anteaters have a 2.82 team ERA. Elliot Surrey (7-4, 2.13 ERA) will start the opener and Andrew Morales (10-2, 1.64) will start Game 2. Morales was the Big West Pitcher of the Year. Reliever Sam Moore is one of the nation’s best.

FISH’S HEALTH: Ankles always have a high risk of re-injury. Fish’s was severe enough to keep him out of the final three games of the Big 12 tournament. He is Oklahoma State’s best power hitter, and any time without him could be problematic with so much at stake.

HEAVY HITTERS: UC Irvine has a solid one-two punch in Connor Spencer and Taylor Sparks. Spencer, the most outstanding player of the Corvallis Regional, is hitting .364 with team highs of 43 RBIs and 15 doubles. Sparks is hitting .297 with 14 doubles, a team-high eight triples and five homers.

INCONSISTENT IRVINE: Knocking off the nation’s No. 1 overall seed on the road required a high level of focus that will be difficult to duplicate, and the Anteaters have been inconsistent. They were one of the last teams to make the NCAA field after losing their last eight conference games during the regular season.

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