Russell Hits for the Cycle in Blowout Win

Kyle Russell hit for the cycle as Texas (34-12) flew by the visiting UT Pan American Broncs (15-34) Tuesday night 11-1 on a mercy rule-shortened game.

As if to punctuate how the rest of the game was going to proceed, sophomore right fielder Kyle Russell blasted a two-run bomb for Texas in the bottom of the first. It was his NCAA-leading 24th homerun of the year. Now that the pressure of the Texas homerun record is past, Russell is even more comfortable at the plate.

"I'm way more relaxed now. I'm just going up there and the hits are coming," Russell told Inside Texas.

The game also ended the way it began, with Russell's teammates exiting the dugout to greet him. The game ended on a pre-decided mercy rule when Russell's RBI single gave Texas a 10-run lead in the seventh.

"They have a long trip home, it's something they (UT Pan Am) requested and there was the possibility of rain," said Texas head coach Augie Garrido on the quick end to the game. "We wanted to give them an opportunity to get home."

That single also completed the cycle for Russell, who did it in reverse order on Tuesday night, hitting a homerun, then a triple, then a double and then finally the game-ending single. The poignancy of the game concluding with Russell getting the cycle was not lost on Garrido.

"That's one of the many miracles of baseball," said Garrido. "They pop up all the time and that's what makes it fun."

This is also the first cycle that the sophomore right fielder has hit at any level of baseball.

"It's pretty crazy," said Russell. "I can't even classify what's going through my mind right now, but it's pretty amazing."

Russell also brought home runners with each of those hits, giving him a career-high five RBI on the night.

Every single Texas batter got at least one hit in the game, but the damage wasn't really done until the fifth and sixth innings. The Longhorns only led 2-1 entering the fifth, with UT Pan Am getting its lone run on a solo shot from catcher Nick Spears, but Texas picked up seven runs over the next two innings and the game got out of hand in a hurry.

As if to indicate this, Texas sent infielder Josh Prince to the mound to pitch in the seventh. It was only the second inning for Prince as a pitcher on the season and he came into the game sporting a 9.00 ERA, having given up a run in that single inning. But the freshman only gave up one hit and struck out two of the batters he faced in the seventh.

Austin Wood (5-1) was the winning pitcher. The sophomore left-hander pitched six innings, giving up one run on the solo homer and four hits while striking out five. Wood also had no walks in a solid outing.

"I left the ball up a little bit and I needed to keep it down to stay in the game. I got things turned around and it worked good for me," Wood told Inside Texas.

Texas next travels to Stillwater to take on Oklahoma State in a three-game weekend set. The first pitch of Friday's game is set for 6:30 p.m.

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