Brooks Marlow

FORT WORTH — The momentum the Longhorns built over the last week dissipated in seven hours Saturday afternoon.

Texas gave up 21 runs and 26 hits two games as the Longhorns dropped both games of a doubleheader to TCU.

“The separation between the two teams might have been the infield play,” head coach Augie Garrido said.

The day got off to a rough start in the bottom of the first. With a runner on base, senior pitcher Parker French fielded a ground ball, but threw the ball past second base trying to turn the double play. The error came back to hurt the Longhorns as the Horned Frogs struck for two runs on a single by Dane Steinhagen.

After the Longhorns pulled back to within 2-1 in the second, TCU responded with two more runs on a single and a fielding error by junior left fielder Ben Johnson.

TCU's lead grew to 6-2, but Texas made a run in the eighth. The Longhorns drew four walks in the inning’s first six batters to cut the deficit to 6-3 and Johnson legged out an infield single to plate another run.

Junior shortstop C.J Hinojosa led off the ninth with a single and eventually scored on a double play; however, senior second baseman Brooks Marlow struck out to end the game.

“We kind of fed off of it a bit,” Marlow said. “We had the momentum a little bit even though we lost.”

Texas got off to another rough start in the second game with TCU taking a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first. But the Longhorns fired back with an RBI single by Hinojosa to tie the game.

After the Horned Frogs retook the lead in the bottom of the inning, Marlow responded in the fourth with a solo home run to right field. Johnson then gave Texas its first lead of the day with a single to right to score freshman designated hitter Joe Baker, who had reached on a two-base error.

But that was it for the Texas offense. The Longhorns loaded the bases in the sixth with one out, but failed to capitalize after senior right fielder Collin Shaw and Hinojosa struck out to end the frame.

Meanwhile, TCU struck for a run in the fifth, sixth and then blew the game wide open in a six-run seventh inning to take a 10-3 lead. All six of the runs were unearned due to lapses in the defense, including Hinojosa made a throwing error and overthrew second after making a diving stop up the middle.

“Those were the plays that separated the two teams,” Garrido said.

Junior pitcher Ty Culbreth got the start in place of sophomore Kacy Clemens, who Garrido said would be out for a month. Culbreth finished with three earned runs and six strikeouts in six innings of work.

“I felt like I attacked the zone,” Culbreth said. “I felt like I had command of all three of my pitches.”

The teams were forced to play a doubleheader because of torrential rain and winds Friday night. The Longhorns will look to avoid the series sweep in the final game on Sunday at 1 p.m.

Senior second baseman Brooks Marlow, along with the rest of the Longhorns, got back on track Tuesday night with two hits and two RBIs in the 5–4 win over Wichita State.
Photo Credit: Lauren Ussery | Daily Texan Staff

After suffering a seventh-straight loss Sunday to Oklahoma State, head coach Augie Garrido had two options — tell the team what it should be doing, which would add on more pressure, or keep an optimistic attitude about Texas’ current situation.

Garrido chose to take the latter option.

“Our coaches decided that we should make sure they recognize the opportunities they have,” Garrido said. “We have everything we want out in front of us by playing team baseball.”

And, at least for one night, it worked. On Tuesday, the recently dormant offense struck for five runs in the first four innings and held on against Wichita State for the team’s first win in two weeks.

Now, the trick will be for the Longhorns to continue their momentum in a three-game showdown with rival Oklahoma this weekend.

“That’s where the excitement is,” Garrido said.

The seven-game losing streak dropped the Longhorns out of almost all of the major rankings and pushed the team to fourth in the Big 12.

“[The rankings] helped build negative momentum,” Garrido said. “It’s hard to clear that out of your mind.”

With the Longhorns looking for positive momentum heading into the key conference series, Garrido said the coaching staff kept the message light to keep the team from getting lost in its failures. He also had help from the locker room. 

Senior second baseman Brooks Marlow said players took on more of a leading role in the meeting before the game.

“Coaches can only do so much,“ Marlow said. “It’s just us guys coming together and having that great energy and feeding off each other, and that’s what we did [Tuesday].”

The five runs Tuesday were the most the Longhorns have scored in a game since the 6–4 win at Texas State on March 24 — the last win for the Longhorns.

But winning a midweek game against an up-and-down Wichita State team and beating the rival Sooners are two separate challenges.

Oklahoma comes into this weekend in a unique position. The Sooners, currently ahead of the Longhorns in Big 12 with a 6–3 conference record, had won five-straight games before Tuesday night, when Oklahoma quickly found itself on the wrong end of a 24–2 decision against Oklahoma State.

Still, the Sooners are third in the Big 12 with a .285 batting average and 209 runs scored. Texas, on the other hand, has a conference-worst .247 batting average and has only scored 159 runs. And the Texas pitchers will have to figure out a way to get through an Oklahoma lineup that has blasted 27 home runs this season.

Marlow said the players still feel optimistic about their position, with the end of the regular season a little over a month away.

“We’re halfway through the season, and I think we’re sitting just fine,” Marlow said. “I think this turns it around.”

Freshman pitcher Connor Mayes got a pair of big outs to help Texas escape a bases-loaded jam in the eighth and propel Texas to its first win since March 22.
Photo Credit: Lauren Ussery | Daily Texan Staff

Texas was in desperate need of win when the Shockers loaded the bases late in the game with one out. 

Freshman pitcher Connor Mayes was on the mound as the Longhorns (18–15, 5–4 Big 12) clung to a one-run lead. 

But, with a shallow fly and a groundout, Mayes came up big as Texas finally ended its seven-game skid with a 6–4 win over Wichita State on Tuesday night.

“It’s great for something to go right for us, especially after the past couple of weekends,” second baseman Brooks Marlow said. “I think it’s just a step forward for us and it’s going to make us that much better.”

The Texas offense had struggled over the seven-game losing streak, but it came up big against the Shockers.

“It was important to see the team much more relaxed,” head coach Augie Garrido said. “We looked much better tonight as a team.”

The Longhorns struck early, taking their first opening-frame lead since their series finale against Kansas State on March 22.

In the opening frame, freshman shortstop Joe Baker led off with a walk, which was followed by a Shocker error on a sacrifice bunt that allowed senior second baseman Brooks Marlow to reach first safely. Baker came around to score on an RBI fielder’s choice by junior left fielder Ben Johnson. 

Texas added another run on a double by sophomore third baseman C.J Hinojosa.

The offense continued its early onslaught in the second inning. Sophomore center fielder Zane Gurwitz began the Longhorn threat with a one-out walk, Baker followed with a single to put runners on the corners, and Marlow pushed the Texas lead to 3–0 with an RBI single. Sophomore catcher Tres Barrera extended the lead to 4–0 with a  sacrifice fly.

The Shockers fought back in the fourth, when freshman designated hitter Gunnar Troutwine hit an RBI double to cut the Texas lead to 4–2.

But Texas answered in the bottom of the frame as Marlow recorded another RBI single to put Texas up 5-2.

A two-run Wichita State homer in the fifth cut the deficit to one.

After the Shocker homer, both offenses went cold until Wichita State loaded the bases in the eighth.

Texas added an insurance run in the ninth on Baker’s third hit of the game.

Senior reliever Ty Culdreth closed the game out in the ninth and secured their first win since March 24. Freshman pitcher Jake McKenzie, who came on in relief in the fourth for sophomore starter Josh Sawyer, picked up the win.

“The best part of today was just getting that win,” Baker said. “We really needed that to finally get that first win out of the way and get that streak ended. It was a good win.”

Correction: Due to an editing mistake, an earlier version of this story had Ty Marlow, instead of Ty Culdreth, closing out the game in the ninth inning. 

Senior pitcher Parker French has taken over the top spot in the pitching rotation after posting a 2.41 ERA last season.
Photo Credit: Amy Zhang | Daily Texan Staff

This weekend, the No. 6 Longhorns’ goal for their opening series at Rice is simple.

“[I want them] not to be nervous like we were against Cal last season,” head coach Augie Garrido said. 

Last year, in the opening series at California, Texas committed six errors in its first two games, quickly earning a 0–2 record, before recovering to take the next two games of the series.

A similiar performance this weekend against No. 13 Rice would likely end up with disastrous consequences. The Owls enter the season as the unanimous choice to win Conference USA and a fellow contender to make it to Omaha, Nebraska, in June.

Rice’s junior pitcher, Blake Fox, was named the preseason pitcher of the year for the conference after posting a 1.46 ERA last year, and senior catcher John Clay Reeves was tabbed the preseason player of the year.

But Texas senior second baseman Brooks Marlow said the team is not worried about how Rice is doing.

“We’ve just got to take it pitch-by-pitch and game-by-game,” Marlow said. “It doesn’t matter who we play; we’re just going to play
Texas baseball.”

The Longhorns have firepower of their own, with 22 returning players from last year’s team, including seven starting position players who made a run at the College World Series. Texas even beat Rice in the regional round of the NCAA tournament last year.

Garrido said experience should help eliminate the early-season errors they had last year.

“They most likely will not doubt themselves as much [this year] because of that,” Garrido said. “That is my hope at Rice.”

One potential early-season weak spot is the team’s pitching. While senior pitcher Parker French will get the start Friday, sophomore pitchers Kacy Clemens and Josh Sawyer, Saturday’s starters, have yet to see substantial time on the hill in collegiate action. Last year’s postseason star, junior pitcher Chad Hollingsworth, is coming off shoulder issues from the summer.

On the offensive side of things, the Longhorns stand out. Junior shortstop C.J Hinojosa, sophomore catcher Tres Barrera and Marlow, who drilled four home runs last year, are just the tip of the iceberg of what Texas brings to the batter’s box this year.

With freshmen such as catcher Michael Cantu, who hit .352 in high school, and third baseman Bret Boswell, who hit .410 before coming to college, Texas feels confident it’ll be solid on all sides of the ball this year.

“We’ve got one of the best pitching staffs, and we have one of the toughest hitting lineups in the country,” Marlow said. “I think it’s all going to come together, and it’s going to be really good.”

How good the Longhorns will be this season probably won’t be determined during this four-game series, given the ups and downs the team had last season on its run to the College World Series.

Still, the Longhorns want to make a statement this weekend.

“We’ve got to go out there and play a hard game,” Marlow said. “We’ve got a lot of freshmen that need to get their feet wet. This is the weekend to do it and see how they’re going to react to the atmosphere around them and see what they’re capable of.”

After batting leadoff last season, senior second baseman Brooks Marlow said he’s OK with head coach Augie Garrido putting him fourth in the lineup for this season.
Photo Credit: Sam Ortega | Daily Texan Staff

There is a method to Texas baseball head coach Augie Garrido’s madness.

Every spot in the Longhorn lineup is carefully calculated, and every pitcher knows his duty. Garrido plans meticulously to build a team that can compete with the best, and, as the season approaches, he sees the team taking shape.

Senior second baseman Brooks Marlow knows it. Although Marlow is moving down in the lineup to the fourth spot, he knows Garrido’s intention is to help the team.  While Marlow’s move from the lead-off to the clean-up spot puts him in a new role, he’s ready to embrace the change.

“I’m just glad I’m in the lineup,” Marlow said. “It’s not just for power because obviously I’m not the one who has the most power on the team. This whole lineup is just grinding it out, getting quality at bats and seeing good pitches and getting guys on.”

Marlow, a Giddings, Texas, native, has seen plenty of time in the Texas lineup during his four years on campus. The 5-foot-9, 184-pound second baseman made 51 starts during his freshman season, batting .214 with 29 RBIs.

He followed up his All-Big 12 freshman season with a solid sophomore year, hitting .250 in his second season with the Longhorns. Last year, Marlow was the leadoff batter and started all 67 games. He hit .268 and had a .383 on-base percentage last season. As a defender, Marlow was awarded the Rawlings Gold Glove at second base.

While Marlow had success in the leadoff spot last season, he has no plans to change his mentality at the plate this year.

“Just like I was leadoff last year, now I’m the four-hole,” Marlow said. “Nothing is going to change. I’m going to attack the ball before it attacks me.”

Now that the second baseman has accepted his new role in the lineup, Garrido knows every player needs to follow suit.

“We have a Division I player at every position,” Garrido said. “It’s been probably since maybe 2005 or 2006 that we’ve had every position with a Division I player. The players are good enough. It all gets back to how do the people accept … the things they don’t like and do them anyway for the good of the team. That’s what it comes down to.”

As the new season begins Friday, Marlow believes the team has bought into Garrido’s message. Everyone is prepared to accept their roles, he said.

“We’ve got to be ready,” Marlow said. “I believe everybody is ready. We’re swinging the bat pretty well, pitching well and playing defense well, so I would say we’re ready.”

Senior pitcher Nathan Thornhill led Texas past Vanderbilt Friday, pitching eight shutout innings en route to victory. 

Photo Credit: Charlie Pearce | Daily Texan Staff

OMAHA, Neb. - Dominant pitching and early scoring led the Longhorns to a 4-0 victory over the Commodores in Omaha Friday, setting up a rematch Saturday, for a trip to the Championship Series.

Senior pitcher Nathan Thornhill was brilliant on the mound, tossing eight innings of shut-out baseball and only surrendering six hits in what might have been his final start as a Longhorn. Thornhill had the Vanderbilt off balance all afternoon, despite being forced to throw 131 pitches, as his effort kept Texas from being eliminated for at least one more day.

“This is who he is," Texas head coach Augie Garrido said. "He doesn't lead by telling people what to do, he leads by doing it himself. He leads by example."

The Longhorns struck first, thanks to Vanderbilt starter Tyler Ferguson’s lack of control to begin the game. Ferguson hit junior second baseman Brooks Marlow with the first pitch of the game. Ferguson continued to pitch wildly in the first innning, as he walked sophomore leftfielder Ben Johnson and then hit senior centerfielder Mark Payton to load the bases with no outs.

Freshman catcher Tres Barrera struck out, bringing up sophomore shortstop CJ Hinojosa, who was the hero against UC Irvine, with one out and the bases loaded.  Hinojosa hit a sharp liner that ahad the potential to turn into a double play, but, fortunately for Texas, it hit the second base umpire, leading to a dead ball that advanced all the runners and scored Texas’ first run of the game.

Junior right fielder Collin Shaw then struck out, but the Longhorns scored another run in the first when senior designated hitter Madison Carter walked to score a run. After walking in the second run, Ferguson, who had only thrown 12 of his 27 pitches for strikes, was pulled.

The strong start, and specifically Hinojosa’s lucky hit, gave Texas momentum and allowed the Longhorns to take control of the game.

“It got us off to an early lead which we always like," Payton said. “That’s our goal on the offensive side, to let our pitcher settle down, and we were able to do that today.”

The Longhorns struck with two more in the second, via back-to-back triples by freshman third baseman Zane Gurwitz and Marlow. Marlow scored after Payton layed down a sacrifice bunt and was called safe at first after an error.

Once the Longhorns took the early lead, Vanderbilt was never able to get back in the game, as Thornhill consistently got the better of the Commodores.  

Texas has impressed in their three contests since falling in the College World Series opener and appear to relish the "must-win" situations they have been forced to deal with.

“We got that mind that its either you win or you go home," Marlow said. "I think that’s what everyone is taking in after that first game against [UC] Irvine. If you lose you go home. I think that’s the mindset everyone has taken.”

The Longhorns will play the Commodores again Saturday at 7 p.m. Parker French will get the start for Texas.

Texas knocked off Rice 3-2 in 11 innings to remain undefeated in the Houston Regional on Saturday.

Both teams went down in order in the first inning, but the Longhorns threatened in the first. Freshman catch Tres Barrera reached first and advanced to second on an error, but was out at third base after a failed bunt by senior designated hitter Madison Carter.  Carter advanced to second on a failed pickoff attempt, but the Texas hitters were unable to drive him home.

The Owls scored one in the bottom of the first on two hits, but left two on base as junior pitcher Parker French managed to pitch Texas out of a jam.

The Longhorns answered the Owls in the sixth inning, but running errors prevented them from taking control. Sophomore leftfielder Ben Johnson started off the inning with an infield single but he was subsequently picked off by Rice’s ace Blake Fox. That first out was followed by a double by senior centerfielder Mark Payton, that probably would’ve scored Johnson, but extended Payton’s on-base streak to 97 games. Barrera drove Payton home on a double of his own but Texas failed to produce another run.

Rice answered with a run of their own, thanks to a single, a sacrifice bunt and a double that gave them a 2-1 lead.

Texas had an opportunity to tie the game in the seventh inning after freshman third baseman Zane Gurwitz reached on a single.  Gurwitz advanced to second on a wild pitch that was right in front of the catcher, but was thrown out at third after being too aggressive. Junior second baseman Brooks Marlow followed with a single that would’ve scored Gurwitz.  Rice rattled off two hits in the bottom of their inning, but junior leftfielder Collin Shaw gunned out the Rice runner at third to relieve the threat.

The Longhorns tied the game in the eighth inning with a Payton double and Barrera single that put runners on the corners with no outs. After Carter struck out, sophomore shortstop CJ Hinojosa drove home Payton on a sacrifice fly that was hit just deep enough to score the run.

Texas nearly scored in the ninth inning after, Marlow pounded a ball that just missed leaving the park, but he was stranded at second.

Texas led off the 11th inning with a double by Gurwitz, which was followed by a Marlow single driving in the run.  Marlow tied a career-high with four hits in the contest.  The Longhorns retired the side in the bottom half of the inning to earn the win.

Junior pitcher Parker French pitched a gem, throwing six and two thirds innings of six hit baseball, allowing two runs. Sophomore closer John Curtiss threw four perfect innings to get the win. 

Texas now waits the winner of the Texas A&M and Rice elimination game. The Longhorns will play at 7 PM tonight.

Freshman third baseman Zane Gurwitz connected at the plate in each of three games in Texas' sweep of Baylor this weekend. After 1-for-4 finishes Friday and Saturday, Gurwitz led the team hitting Sunday with a 2-for-3 performance and one run. 

Photo Credit: Sam Ortega | Daily Texan Staff

The No. 8 Longhorns have dominated nonconference opponents all season long, boasting a 20-4 record and outscoring opponents by 58 runs. But in-conference play has been another story. Entering the weekend series against Baylor, Texas was just 3-3 in the Big 12 and had only outscored opponents by four runs.

The season’s theme looked like it would continue Friday night as junior starting pitcher Parker French struggled. The Longhorns trailed 4-2 to Baylor (15-16, 4-8 Big 12) in the bottom of the ninth and down to their last strike against Baylor’s senior closer Josh Michalec, who had been 11-for-11 in save opportunities this year.

But the Longhorns have fought until the last out all season long. With the bases loaded and a full count, they did it again, as senior center fielder Mark Payton doubled down the third base line and into the left field corner.

Junior second baseman Brooks Marlow, who had walked to load the bases two batters earlier, never stopped, beating Michalec’s throw to send the Longhorns to a 5-4 win and steal momentum in the series.

“Somehow the game knows if you’re committed to the team and playing the game right,” head coach Augie Garrido said. “Then it rewards you. That’s what’s happening to us right now.”

Prior to the ninth, Payton went 0-for-4 in the game, putting his 69-game reached base streak in jeopardy. But the double won the game and ran his streak to an NCAA-best 70. He would reach base safely in each of the next two games to push that streak to 72.

The Longhorns (26-7, 6-3 Big 12) kept the energy rolling Saturday to claim a 6-3 win to take their second straight Big 12 series after losing their previous one. Junior pitcher Dillon Peters (4-2) went six innings, allowing two earned runs while recording a career-high nine strikeouts. Freshman relief pitcher Morgan Cooper came in for three nearly perfect innings to close things out.

Eight Longhorns recorded a hit in the game for a balanced Texas offense, including three from senior designated hitter Madison Carter, two from freshman first baseman Kacy Clemens and two from freshman catcher Tres Barrera, both doubles to keep his hot streak alive.

On Sunday, with senior Nathan Thornhill (5-0) on the mound, the Longhorns completed the sweep of Baylor with a 4-0 win. Thornhill mowed down Baylor, allowing just two hits in eight scoreless inning. The outing helped lower his Big 12-best ERA to .73.

Both pitchers silenced the hitters early on, but an RBI single from Marlow in the fifth broke the scoreless tie. Texas later added three in the seventh, sparked by Barrera’s bases-loaded double.

Texas will look to keep its five-game win streak alive Tuesday when No. 12 Rice comes to town.

Photo Credit: Jonathan Garza | Daily Texan Staff

It was an unlikely hero who helped the No. 12 Longhorns knock off No. 24 Texas Tech in the rubber match to end the conference series and losing streak at 12: senior designated hitter Madison Carter. Carter had only four at-bats on the year before the game but went 3-for-6 Sunday with the game-winning RBI in the top of the 12th to seal the win. 

While run-scoring had been at a premium for the Longhorns (22-7, 3-3 Big 12) earlier in the season, the bats came alive in Lubbock against the Red Raiders (22-9, 4-5 Big 12), who boast the conference’s second-best pitching staff.

Texas’ offense looked sluggish early on Friday, relying on junior second baseman Brooks Marlow to keep it in the game. Marlow’s first homer of the year tied the game at one before the Texas offense erupted in the fifth to break the game open at 5-1.

The Longhorns scored in every inning from there on out, piling it on the Red Raiders, 11-1.

Marlow went 4-6 with three extra base hits to spark the offense. Senior center fielder Mark Payton, freshman catcher Tres Barrera and junior right fielder Collin Shaw recorded two hits apiece as well. Barrera and Payton each had three RBIs.

On the mound, junior Parker French (4-2) went seven innings, allowing just six hits and one run, to lower his season ERA to 1.57.

In game two in Lubbock, junior Dillon Peters’ worst performance of the year doomed the Longhorns 8-4. Dillon’s ERA went up nearly a full run from 1.79 to 2.68.

Peters failed to get out of the fourth inning, giving up five earned runs while throwing three wild pitches.

Freshman Zane Gurwitz and Barrera did all they could to keep the Longhorns in it. Barrera, who was hitting just .128 on March 11, went 3-for-5 with his first career home run while Gurwitz went 4-for-4 from the nine hole to help set up the top of the lineup.

With the series tied 1-1, it came down to the rubber match to see whether the Longhorns would end their conference losing streak.

Riding the hot bats of sophomore left fielder Ben Johnson and Barrera, the Longhorns struck first Sunday on a Barrera RBI single in the first. Texas added another on Johnson’s home run in the third.

It appeared to be more than enough for senior pitcher Nathan Thornhill, who shut down the Red Raiders (22-9) in 5.1 innings.

But sophomore pitcher John Curtiss, who had won the closer role with 10.2 shutout innings on the season, blew the two-run lead in the ninth on a steal home and an RBI single. It was the first runs he’s allowed since returning from a surgery that sidelined him last season.

After two scoreless extra innings, the Longhorns finally came through on Carter’s two-run, two-out single. The Longhorns sealed the 5-2 win.

At 22-7, Texas is off to its best start in the first 26 games since opening 22-4 in 2005.

Senior outfielder Mark Payton rounds first base after a hit during Texas' weekend series against Stanford. Payton is leading his team with a slugging percentage of .935 as the Longhorns take on UTPA on Tuesday night. 

Photo Credit: Jenna VonHofe | Daily Texan Staff

When junior infielder Brooks Marlow singled to right field with two outs and the game tied, the crowd rose to its feet.

Senior outfielder Mark Payton began his slow walk to the plate. He was 6-for-7 against Stanford in the series at this point.

“He’s confident,” head coach Augie Garrido said. “He thinks he’s got them right where he wants them. That’s confidence.”

And, to no one’s surprise, Payton delivered, scorching a single up the middle to load the bases. A Stanford wild pitch just a few pitches later would bring in the winning run for Texas.

“Yup. [Payton’s] got my national player of the year vote,” a Stanford man half-seriously joked in the press box. 

Payton is hitting .613 while slugging .935. Both numbers lead the Big 12, far ahead of his contenders.

“He is really playing the game at a high and mature level right now,” Garrido said. “He is just hitting the ball where it is pitched.”

It’s a small sample size. He is just eight games and 31 at bat into his senior year, but, at the same time, his hits are rockets — line drives capable of decapitating the pitcher.

“So, that’s baseball too,” Garrido said about hard outs. “It’s really hard to control the direction of the ball, except for Payton.”

And, when the pitches aren’t there, he doesn’t swing. After going 3-for-3 Saturday against Stanford, the Cardinal didn’t want any part of him, so Payton walked down the first baseline three times.

“I’m just keeping it simple,” Payton said. “Our job as hitters is to get the bat to the next batter.”

Payton sits at just 5 feet 8 inches, the smallest player on Texas’ roster. He’s not physically superior — but technically sound. His hard work is paying off — he’s in the midst of the hottest streak of his career.

“I don’t pay attention to it,” Payton said. “I’ve never really thought about it.”

Instead, he deflects the attention to the team, using “we” in almost every response. He has bought in to Garrido’s philosophy that teamwork, not individuals, wins games.

“I think the other thing unknowingly he is doing is passing it on to his teammates,” Garrido said. “We worked on teamwork, and it’s showing. They are not playing for batting average; they’re playing to keep the rally going and to take a quality at bat. They are fighting to get their teammate to the plate.”

Payton will look to continue his streak when UTPA comes to UFCU Disch-Falk Field on Tuesday at 4:30 p.m.

“I’m just going up with confidence,” Payton said. “I’m keeping it simple and keeping the game slow.”