OKLAHOMA CITY -- Sophomore Randy Boone (Yoakum, Texas) hurled his first career complete game while the Longhorns offense pounded out 14 hits en route to helping No. 3 Texas (44-13) post a 9-0 victory over Kansas (36-28) in front of 1,100 fans during an elimination game at the 2005 Phillips 66 Big 12 Tournament at SBC Bricktown Ballpark on Thursday, May 26. The Longhorns will play Oklahoma State game on Friday, May 27, at 4 p.m. Central in another tournament elimination contest.
The shutout not only marked the 11th of the season for UT, which is the most for a Texas staff since 1986 (11), but was also the first postseason shutout as well as league tournament shutout since May 3, 2003, (7-0 win over Bucknell in Austin during NCAA Regional play) and May 19, 1995 (6-0 win over Rice in College Station during Southwest Conference Tournament action), respectively. Additionally, Boone's complete game marked the fifth for a Texas pitcher this season.
The Longhorns grabbed their first lead of the tournament by sending nine men to the plate in the top of the first and plating four runs to take a 4-0 lead. After Robby Hudson (Redlands, Calif.) doubled to leadoff the ballgame, moved to third on a sac bunt and scored on a RBI-single from Seth Johnston (Boerne, Texas), the Horns came up with two more singles followed by a two-run double off the bat of Nick Peoples (Round Rock, Texas) to jump out to the early lead. Another Hudson double to begin the second inning followed by a flyout and an RBI-groundout from Johnston then pushed the UT advantage to 5-0. Kansas attempted to answer in the bottom half of the inning by loading the bases with one out via a pair of fielder's choice groundballs, an error and a walk, but Boone induced his next batter to hit into an inning-ending, 5-4-3 double play to keep the lead in tact.
In the fourth, Texas put together a two-out rally as Johnston doubled in two runs after a pair of singles and then scored on a RBI-base hit from Carson Kainer (Tomball, Texas) to increase the Longhorns lead to 8-0. The Jayhawks would again challenge in the bottom of the fifth when center fielder Matt Baty was hit by a pitch, stole second and moved to third on a throwing error with two outs, but Boone again quelled the rally by striking out his next batter to move the game to the sixth. A leadoff single from Drew Stubbs (Atlanta, Texas) in the sixth then yielded a run for a 9-0 Texas advantage as after two outs and Stubbs now on second, Chance Wheeless (Round Rock, Texas) delivered a RBI-single to account for his team-leading 22nd two-out RBI of the year. From there, both Boone and KU reliever Sean Land kept the opposing offenses quiet as they did not allow a hit between the seventh and eighth. Then, in the bottom half of the ninth, Boone allowed only a two-out walk before completing the nine-inning effort with a groundout to first. While Boone, who allowed only three hits over the first four innings and striking out seven to come within one of matching his career high, picked up the win to improve to 6-4 on the year, Kansas starter Mike Zagurski shouldered the loss.
Pacing the Longhorns' offense, which recorded its second double-digit hit game in as many days, was the trio of Hudson, Kainer and Wheeless, who each registered career-tying three hit efforts, while combining to account for three RBI and five runs scored. Additionally, Johnston extended his hitting streak to five games as he matched his career-high with four RBI during his team leading 31st multi-hit and 15th multi-RBI game of the season. Meanwhile, the KU offense was led by A.J. Van Slyke, Sean Richardson and Jared Schweitzer, who accounted for the Jayhawks three hits on the afternoon.
2005 Big 12 Tournament Postgame Notes & Quotes
· Sophomore pitcher Randy Boone recorded his first career complete game as well as his first complete-game shutout. Texas now has three different pitchers who have recorded complete-game shutouts as Kyle McCulloch and Adrian Alaniz both turned the trick earlier in the season on April 1 (vs. Kansas State) and April 16 (vs. Oklahoma), respectively.
· Boone's complete-game effort was also the fifth of the season for the Longhorns.
· The 9-0 shutout marked the 11th shutout of the season for the UT pitching staff, which is the most for a Texas club since 1986 (11), and was the program's first postseason shutout as well as league tournament shutout since May 30, 2003, (7-0 win over Bucknell in Austin during NCAA Regional play) and May 19, 1995 (6-0 win over Rice in College Station during Southwest Conference tourney play), respectively.
· Senior second baseman Robby Hudson has now hit safely in 10 of the last 11 games. Additionally with two doubles in the first two innings, three runs scored and three hits in the contest, Hudson recorded the first multi-double game of his career, his third career, three-run game and his fourth career three-hit effort.
· After going 3-for-5 with two runs scored and four RBI, senior shortstop Seth Johnson is now riding a five-game hitting streak, has hit safely in 49 of 57 games this season and upped his team-leading totals for multi-hit and multi-RBI games to 31 and 15, respectively. He also tied his career-high for RBI with four on the day.
· Sophomore centerfielder Drew Stubbs has reached base safely in 54 of 57 contests in 2005.
· With 14 hits on the day, Texas has now posted 10 or more hits in 29 of their 57 games and in both of its Big 12 Tournament contests to date.
· Sophomore outfielder Carson Kainer and sophomore first baseman Chance Wheeless each matched their career-high for hits as they both collected three on the afternoon. Of additional note, Wheeless also upped his team-leading two-out RBI total to 22 this year with his two-out, RBI-single in the sixth inning.
· Sophomore Clay Van Hook, a second team All-Big 12 selection as a utility player, started his first career game at catcher.
Head Coach Augie Garrido
On Texas' overall performance: It's [baseball] about coming out with a competitive attitude and managing your mind in such a way that you remain confident and competitive in turning-point situations.
On the number of balls that Kansas hit hard right at Texas players: Somehow, I think in this weird mind that you know I have, that baseball knows who is really putting it on the line. I don't know how the game knows it. But then the intangibles become a part of it and the reward for putting everything on the line is luck.
When you are really trying your best, somehow, someway, the game recognizes that and the luck factor goes your way. There was some of that in today.
Senior shortstop Seth Johnston
On the offensive production from the top of the order: Robby Hudson has been in the leadoff spot for the last couple of games and he really looks comfortable there. Today, he starts out by hitting two doubles and a single and he is on third two times when I come up. With a runner on third base and less than two outs, your job is to get him home and I was able to do that twice. When those guys get on base, it is easy to score a lot of runs.
On responding after yesterday's loss: We knew that we had to respond to what happened yesterday. I feel that the four-run first inning really helped us out. Robby (Hudson) hitting that double to start the game is a huge confidence builder. Hitting the ball hard is contagious.
Sophomore pitcher Randy Boone
On having the early lead: It is always great to take the mound with the lead. Any time you can do that, it takes a huge burden off the pitcher's shoulders. With a team like Kansas and the way that they swing the bats, it is definitely a big help.
On his slow start: I think it just took me a while to get into a rhythm. I struggled with my command early, something I don't usually have a whole lot of problems with, but I managed to battle through it. They were hitting some balls hard in the first few innings, but luckily, they were right at some people. Our defense was also making plays throughout the entire game.