AUSTIN, Texas -- By scoring in each of the first five innings and tallying 15 runs on 16 hits, No. 7 Texas earned its first victory of the year behind a 15-2 win over UT-Pan American in front of 4,793 fans at Disch-Falk Field on Wednesday, Feb. 8.
The win snapped a three-game losing skid for the Longhorns, who improved to 1-3 on the young season, while the Broncs fell to 3-2 overall. Texas also utilized a total of six pitchers in the contest, who combined to allow only two runs on seven hits while fanning 13.
UT struck first in the bottom of the opening inning as two walks were followed by a single off the bat of Chance Wheeless (Round Rock, Texas), a double from Carson Kainer (Tomball, Texas) and a Bradley Suttle (Boerne, Texas) base hit to plate four runs. Still not done in the frame, the Horns received a RBI-triple from Preston Clark (Rockwall, Texas) and a run-scoring hit from Clay Van Hook (Brenham, Texas) to grab a 6-0 advantage. One inning later, Drew Stubbs (Atlanta, Texas) reached on a one-out error, stole second and then scored on a hit up-the-middle from Wheeless to make the score 7-0 in favor of Texas. A Clark solo home run in the third would up the lead to 8-0, while UT pitchers Riley Boening (Yoakum, Texas) and Kyle Walker (The Woodlands, Texas) combined for seven strikeouts, five of which came from Walker during two frames of work, over four scoreless innings.
In the fourth, the Longhorns increased their lead to 12-0 by using three singles, a walk and a second two-run double off the bat of Kainer to bring in four more scores. While the Broncs would register their first hit since the opening frame with a two-out double from Abraham Garcia in the top of the fifth, Austin Wood (Kingwood, Texas), who came on in relief to start the inning, worked out of the threat with a groundout to third. The Texas offense then tacked on three more scores in the fifth highlighted by a RBI-triple from Jordan Danks (Round Rock, Texas) to break on top 15-0. Although UTPA would string together a walk and two singles to bring home one run and eventually load the bases in the seventh, reliever Juston Street (Austin, Texas) managed to strike out the side to stymie the challenge. Following a scoreless eighth for both sides, the Broncs again went on the offensive in the top of the ninth. After scoring one run via a hit batter, consecutive singles and a fielder's choice, UTPA had two runners on with two outs when reliever Joseph Krebs (Bridgeport, Texas) induced his next hitter to groundout to end the game. While Boening earned his first career win during a declared start in which he tossed two scoreless frames, UT-Pan American starter Aaron Guerra shouldered the loss to even his record at 1-1 on the year.
Texas' 16-hit attack was led by six players with multi-hit outings, including Wheeless, who collected a career-best four hits and matched a career-high with three runs scored, Kainer, who set a career-high with four RBI during a 2-for-4 effort with two runs scored, and Clark, who went 2-for-3 with a triple and his first career home run. The Broncs' offense, meanwhile, was paced by Louis Alamia, who went 2-for-4, and Leighton Autrey, who drove in both UTPA runs during a 2-for-2 outing.
Up next, the Horns head to Minute Maid Park for the 2006 Houston College Classic, which begins on Friday, Feb. 10 when UT faces the Houston Cougars at 7 p.m. Central.