Baseball: Texas Takes Series With 11-3 Triumph

On the strength of an eight-run fifth inning, which included six runs with two outs, No. 1 Texas (28-4, 4-2 Big 12) earned an 11-3 victory over Oklahoma State (17-9, 1-2 Big 12) in front of a crowd of 4,824 at Disch-Falk Field on Sunday, Mar. 28. With the win, Texas picks up a 2-1 series victory over the Cowboys as the Longhorns have now won 17 of their last 19 contests.

A RBI-single from Josh Fields that came after Rod Allen led off with a base hit, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and stole third produced a 1-0 Cowboys lead in the top of the first. The 1-0 OSU advantage would hold through four frames despite both offenses threatening to score in the fourth and respective starters Justin Simmons (DeSoto, Texas/Duncanville) for Texas and Daniel Rew for Oklahoma State working out of jams. Then, in the bottom of the fifth, J.D. Reininger (Spring Branch, Texas/Smithson Valley) drew a leadoff walk, moved to second on a sacrifice and came around to score on a RBI-base hit from Dooley Prince (Sulphur, La./Sulphur/McNeese State) to knot the game at 1-1. From there, Hunter Harris (Tulsa, Okla./Metro Christian Academy/Connors State College) tripled in Prince, Curtis Thigpen (Forney, Texas/Forney) and Carson Kainer (Tomball, Texas/Tomball) both walked around a fielder's choice bunt to load the bases. Seth Johnston (Boerne, Texas/Boerne) and Drew Stubbs (Atlanta, Texas/Atlanta) then each worked walks to drive in runs before Reininger drove a 3-2 pitch over the left field wall for his first career grand slam to push UT in front by a score of 8-1.

Following a scoreless sixth, OSU would plate a pair of scores on a RBI-groundout and a wild pitch to make it an 8-3 game after a single by Jason Jaramillo and a double off the bat of Ty Wright placed runners on second and third with no outs. Responding immediately, Johnston, who singled to open the bottom of the seventh, scored on a triple from Stubbs, who then came plateward on a sacrifice fly from Reininger, to rebuild Texas' seven-run cushion at 10-3. The Horns then tacked on another run in the bottom of the eighth courtesy of a double by Harris and a RBI-single from Chance Wheeless (Round Rock, Texas/Round Rock) to push UT on top 11-3. While Oklahoma State would put runners on second and third with two down in the ninth, the relief tandem of Kyle Yates (Kerrville, Texas/Kerrville Tivy/Midland College) and Buck Cody (Oklahoma City, Okla./Casady) quelled the rally to seal the series victory for Texas. Simmons, who scattered six hits over a strong 6.2-inning performance notched his sixth win of the year, while Rew shouldered the loss for OSU.

Paving the way for the UT offense was Reininger, who drove in five runs and scored two more during a 1-for-1 afternoon, the duo of Stubbs and Harris, who each tallied a pair of hits while combining for three runs and three RBI, and Johnston, who scored twice and also drove in one run. Oklahoma State, meanwhile, was led by Jaramillo, who went 2-for-4 with a run scored, and Wright, who collected two hits in three at bats while also scoring one run.

Prior to heading out on the road next weekend, the Longhorns play host to the Broncs of UT-Pan American at Disch-Falk Field on Tuesday, Mar. 30 at 6:15 p.m.

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