Stanford was undefeated at home until Texas arrived in Palo Alto.
No. 21 Texas scored with speed, power and patience in its 4-0 victory over No. 19 Stanford on Thursday night.
One bunt and one error were the only things separating the Longhorns and the Cardinal in the early stages of the game. With runners on first and second, junior left fielder Travis Jones laid a perfectly placed bunt down the third base line.
The throw to first was in time, but slightly off. Jones ran right through the glove of the Stanford first baseman as the ball dribbled into right field. This allowed senior Kacy Clemens to round third and give Texas its first run of the night.
The score was locked at 1-0 for the next four innings after sophomore pitcher Nolan Kingham didn’t allow Stanford to get on the board. The right hander threw for a career-high eight strikeouts in seven innings. Kingham only allowed three hits en route to shutting the Stanford offense down.
The Longhorns had a couple of opportunities to extend their lead, but they didn’t take advantage of two bases loaded situations, keeping the score at 1-0.
It was senior Zane Gurwitz who finally added to the Texas lead after a two-out solo home run gave the Longhorns a 2-0 lead. But the Longhorns weren’t done.
As the game headed to the ninth, the Longhorns made sure to get a couple of insurance runs. The patience displayed at the plate in the ninth inning forced two walks with bases loaded, allowing Texas to break the game open with a 4-0 lead.
Although the Longhorns struck out 12 times, they forced six walks, which was a huge advantage in the final frame.
Texas held its ground in the bottom of the ninth, ending any possibility of a late game comeback for the Cardinal.
The 4-0 victory marks the third straight for the Longhorns and the first home loss for Stanford. Game two in Palo Alto is set to begin at 8 p.m. Friday.