Texas scored 21 runs against UNLV last weekend, including 18 in the series’ final two games. It could have used some of those runs on Thursday night.
The Longhorns fell to Stanford 0-1 in an old fashioned pitchers duel at UFCU–Disch Falk Field. Texas had numerous opportunities to win the game with runners in scoring position throughout the night, but none came to fruition.
“We struck out more than they did, but we also hit balls hard,” head coach Augie Garrido said. “So the game went 0–0 for a long time. We had some quality at bats, it just didn’t produce results.”
Both teams trotted out true freshman in the opening contest of the weekend. Freshman Nolan Kingham stranded runners in each of his first three innings for the Longhorns, while Stanford’s Kris Bubic threw with pinpoint command. Bubic came onto the hill throwing darts for the Cardinal, striking out the side in the top of the first. After three frames, neither squad was able to break the scoreless tie.
“Coming off the third inning, I wasn’t really in control” Kingham said. “But I had a short inning in the fourth and fifth, and I felt like I had some good stuff there.”
Both starters were pulled prior to the fifth inning, giving way for both bullpens. But hitters couldn’t even get to them.
After Kingham’s 4 2/3 inning outing, the Texas bullpen went nearly seven consecutive innings without giving up a run. Garrido said a strong bullpen is critical if Texas wants to succeed in 2016.
“[The bullpen] gave us a lot of good innings,” Garrido said. “They really did well, and competed, and that’s a good sign.”
Texas threatened in both the ninth and tenth innings, even loading the bases in the tenth. But both times the Longhorns failed to convert, striking out to end each frame. The lineup that proved so potent the week before ended Thursday night with 18 team strikeouts.
The Longhorns inability to score runs finally caught up to them in the top of the 12th. The Cardinal loaded the bases with one out, and scored on a grounder to third as Texas was unable to turn a double play.
Just as they had all night, Texas failed to produce in the 12th. The Longhorns went down meekly, unable to advance a runner into scoring position.
Despite a frustrating loss, Garrido said it shouldn’t be at the forefront of their mind.
“What I asked them to do was, don’t dwell on the loss,” Garrido said. “Get all of your negative thoughts out of your mind because of one run.”