The Texas Longhorns weren’t able to come away from Waco with a series sweep over the weekend, but did recover from giving up five runs in the ninth inning on Saturday to notch a 7-6 win on Sunday at Waco Ballpark, vaulting the Longhorns from No. 19 to No. 14 in this week’s D1Baseball poll and remain in first place in the Big 12 standings with an 8-4 record.
The Longhorns opened the series with an 11-9 win on Friday behind 15 hits as each starter recorded at least one hit and one RBI. Three errors by Baylor contributed to three unearned runs scored by Texas.
Left-hander Lucas Gordon remained undefeated this season, winning his fourth game with six shutout innings as he scattered five hits and struck out four.
With a 6-0 lead after the top of the eighth inning, the Horns looked like they would cruise to the victory, but the Bears scored three runs on two home runs allowed by left-hander Chase Lummus in the bottom of the inning. And while Texas responded with five runs on four hits in the top of the ninth, left-hander Sam Walbridge and right-hander Max Grubbs each allowed three runs in the bottom of the inning before Grubbs was able to secure the victory.
The struggles in the bullpen foreshadowed Saturday’s game, which featured four runs by Texas in the top of the first inning and five runs by Baylor in the bottom half on four hits and three walks. Right-hander Charlie Hurley was only able to two outs before he was pulled in favor of right-hander Heston Tole, who pitched a season-high 4.2 innings of scoreless baseball to keep the Longhorns in the game. Texas tied the game in the fourth and took the lead in the sixth before adding two more runs in the eighth on a two-run double by catcher Garret Guillemette.
Right-hander Zane Morehouse had a chance to win the series for Texas in the ninth inning, entering the frame with a 9-5 lead, but Morehouse walked two batters and hit two more and left-hander Chris Stuart wasn’t able to bail him out, throwing two wild pitches and allowing a hit in the walk-off win for Baylor.
Command wasn’t exactly present for right-hander Travis Sthele on Sunday in an extremely unusual performance — Sthele didn’t allow a hit in 4.2 innings, but gave up two runs thanks to eight walks and a hit batter. Of his 88 pitches, 42 were balls.
An error by third baseman Peyton Powell helped lead to three unearned runs credited to left-hander Ace Whitehead, who allowed three hits in the fifth inning.
Trailing 5-3 in the top of the seventh, Texas left fielder Porter Brown hit an RBI double off the wall in left-center field and catcher Rylan Galvan followed with a two-run single. Center fielder Eric Kennedy extended the lead to 7-5 with a solo home run in the eighth inning as right-hander Lebarron Johnson Jr. won the series and earned the save for the Longhorns by striking out four in 3.0 innings while working around three walks and a hit.
Texas returns to UFCU Disch-Falk Field on Wednesday for a midweek game against Abilene Christian.