Seth Johnston keys 4-3 win over UNLV
AUSTIN, Texas -- Senior Seth Johnston (Boerne, Texas) manufactured the go-ahead and eventual game-winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning with a single and two steals to lead No. 1 Texas (5-0) to a 4-3 victory over UNLV (1-3) in front of a crowd of 4,052 at Disch-Falk Field on Friday, Feb. 11.
After two scoreless frames to open the ballgame, the Rebels threatened to break out on top in the third when they placed runners on first and second with one down via two singles, but UT starter Randy Boone (Yoakum, Texas) registered a strikeout and had Drew Stubbs (Atlanta, Texas) run down a fly ball in the right-field alley to end the inning unscathed. UNLV again looked to jump in front in the fourth as Matt Fry delivered a leadoff double and moved to third on a groundout, but Boone retired his next two batters on a foul out and a ground ball to shortstop to keep the game knotted at 0-0. In the bottom of the inning, Texas took advantage of two wild pitches to take a 1-0 lead as Chance Wheeless (Round Rock, Texas) singled with two outs, eventually moved to third via a wild pitch and an infield hit from Calvin Beamon (Aurora, Colo.) before scoring on the second wild throw of the frame.
In the top of the fifth, the Rebels tied the game at 1-1 when C.J. Lang drew a leadoff walk, stole second and scored when an infield hit combined with a fielding error. Looking to immediately respond, the Longhorns managed to load the bases in the bottom of the inning on an error, an infield hit and a walk before Taylor Teagarden (Carrollton, Texas) drew a free pass to bring home one run and a Wheeless groundout brought home another to make it 3-1 in favor of UT. Battling back, UNLV quickly tied the score at 3-3 in the top of the sixth as a single by Tyler Beranek and a double off the bat of Ryan Bird coupled with an error and a RBI-groundout plated a pair of scores.
Following back-to-back scoreless half innings, the Horns reclaimed the lead at 4-3 as Johnston beat out an infield hit with one out, stole both second and third and came home on a sacrifice fly delivered by Teagarden. Clayton Stewart (Angleton, Texas), who tossed 1.2 hitless innings of relief, and J. Brent Cox (Bay City, Texas) then held the Rebels in check over the final two innings to close out the one-run victory. While Stewart earned his second win of the year and Cox notched his first save with 1.1 hitless frames, UNLV reliever Matt Wagner incurred the loss. Additionally, Boone received a no-decision despite working five solid innings in which he fanned four and allowed only one run.
Paving the way for the Texas offense on the afternoon was Johnston, who extended his current hit streak to five games with a 2-for-3 outing with one run scored and two stolen bases, and Teagarden, who drove in a pair of runs. UNLV, meanwhile, had its attack led by Zeke Parraz, who went 2-for-4, and Lang, who turned in a 1-for-3 effort that included one run scored and one RBI.
The Horns and Rebels continue their three-game series on Saturday, Feb. 12 with a 2 p.m. Central contest at Disch-Falk Field.