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Topolski grand slam propels Bears over top, prevents sweep

April 22, 1997

By Meghan Crona

Lariat Sports Reporter

Jon Topolski, a Houston sophomore, hit a grand slam against Oklahoma State Sunday helping the Bears defeat the Cowboys 11-6. The Bears had lost the two previous games 10-12 and 6-7 before winning the last game.

The Bears will be back in action this afternoon when they face the Kansas State Wildcats in a double header beginning at 3 at Ferrell Field.

In the third game against the Cowboys, Topolski went 3-5 and had 4 RBIs, taking his batting average to .357. His home run was his 11th for the season.

'I wouldn't have thought that he'd have 11 home runs,' Head Coach Steve Smith said. 'I expected him to have a high average.'

Topolski had help from other guys at the plate. Eric Nelson, a Houston sophomore, went 2-5 and James Blair, a San Antonio sophomore, went 1-3 with one RBI. Jason Jennings, a Mesquite freshman, went 3-4 and scored two runs.

The Bears didn't go down with out a fight in their first two games against the Cowboys. In the first game the Bears scored 10 runs off of 12 hits and forced the game into extra innings. In the second game, they had 11 hits, six runs and five RBIs.

'Losing the first game was difficult,' Smith said. 'It's very disappointing when you get so close and let it slip away. It's a definite test of character.'

The Bears now are preparing to take on Kansas State. The Wildcats come into the game 22-18 overall and 5-16 in conference. They currently stand ninth in the conference while the Bears are 26-19 overall and 13-11 and are in a solid fifth place in the Big 12.

'Their record is very deceiving,' Smith said. 'This is going to be a difficult series.'

The Bears have two factors working against them. This is the first and only mid-week conference series that the Bears will have to play. While the Bears have had games mid-week before, this is the only conference series. This is also the second conference series that the Bears will have played in 6 days

'We thought early that this would be difficult,' Topolski said. 'Our pitching has been good all-around, so it's not that big of a deal.'

The Bears can't take these next games lightly if they want three more victories. The Bears haven't swept a conference series since they beat Nebraska in early March.

'If we keep playing hard, We'll be in good shape,' Topolski said.

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