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Lebarron Johnson Jr. leads Texas to 4-1 win over No. 9 Miami

The lanky right-hander was sensational in a complete-game performance to help David Pierce’s team take control of the Coral Gables Regional.

Texas baseball

Texas Longhorns right-hander Lebarron Johnson Jr. made a triumphant return to his native Sunshine State with a sensational complete-game performance against the No. 9 Miami Hurricanes in the Coral Gables Regional on Saturday, leading the Longhorns to a 4-1 win despite dealing with some early nerves following a lengthy rain delay.

When Johnson finally took the mound over two and a half hours after the scheduled first pitch, he allowed three hits and three walks over the first two innings, escaping bases-loaded jams twice before finding his rhythm and delivering the best and most important performance of his Longhorns career by throwing a career-high 129 pitches, striking out eight and allowing a single run on a homer . After the command issues early, Johnson didn’t allow another walk after the second inning while scattering four hits in the final seven frames.

Johnson received all the run-scoring help he needed in the first three innings.

First baseman Jared Thomas led off the game with a hustle double to right center, setting up a two-run home run by right fielder Dylan Campbell over the scoreboard on a hanging breaking ball. Campbell’s big fly extended his Big 12-record hitting streak to 37 games and put the Longhorns ahead early.

In the second inning, Texas second baseman Jack O’Dowd extended the lead with another mammoth home run, this time to center field.

Texas manufactured another run in the third inning when catcher Garret Guillemette was hit by a pitch and pinch runner Jayden Duplantier scored on a single by designated hitter Jalin Flores following another hit by pitch that advanced Duplantier to second.

The bats for both teams went largely silent for the remaining innings beyond the home run by Miami, but that suited Texas well enough as the Longhorns took control of the regional with the convincing win.

The Hurricanes now face a quick turnaround with an 11 a.m. Central matchup against the Ragin’ Cajuns in an elimination game. The winner faces Texas at 5 p.m. Central on ESPN+ needing two wins to advance.