AUSTIN, Texas -- Behind a season-best 21-hit attack, which produced 19 runs, No. 5 Texas (48-15) posted a 19-8 victory over Arkansas (39-21) in front of 4,881 fans at Disch-Falk Field during the first championship game of the 2005 Austin NCAA Regional Tournament on Sunday, June 5.
With the win, the Longhorns force a second regional championship game with the Razorbacks at Disch-Falk Field set for Monday, June 6 at 1 p.m. Central. Of note, tickets for the contest can be purchased online at and are available for purchase at the stadium ticket office starting at 11 a.m. Central on Monday.
Texas grabbed a 1-0 lead in the top of the first when with two outs and Nick Peoples (Round Rock, Texas) on second after a leadoff walk and a sacrifice bunt, first baseman Chance Wheeless (Round Rock, Texas) lined a RBI-single to right and score the game's first run. Arkansas would look to tie the game in the bottom of the inning with a two-out double from left fielder Clint Arnold, but UT starter Randy Boone (Yoakum, Texas) picked up his second strikeout of the contest to close the frame. After the Longhorns had a runner cut down at home plate in the top of the second on a controversial call following a David Maroul (Benbrook, Texas) single to left field, UT managed to load the bases on a hit from Robby Hudson (Redlands, Calif.) and a walk before a bases-loaded, base-on-balls to Drew Stubbs (Atlanta, Texas) made it 2-0. A bases-clearing triple from Seth Johnston (Boerne, Texas) in front of double off the bat of Wheeless and a RBI-single from Carson Kainer (Tomball, Texas) all with two outs then pushed the Longhorns' lead to 7-0.
Countering in the bottom of the second, Jake Dugger came up with a leadoff double and scored after a groundball out and a sacrifice fly off the bat of Clay Goodwin to make it a 7-1 game. Answering right back in the top of the third, Texas received a solo home run from Taylor Teagarden (Carrollton, Texas) and a single from Hudson that combined with a wild pitch and a two-out double by Stubbs to bring in another score and push the UT lead to 9-1. Arkansas would put runners on second and third with no outs in the bottom of the fourth via a walk and a ground-rule double, but would only get one run to make the score 9-2 on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Dugger as Boone recorded back-to-back strikeouts to end the inning. Continuing to inch back, catcher Brian Walker delivered a leadoff home run in the fifth to pull the Razorbacks within six at 9-3 before consecutive hits from Craig Gentry and Ben Tschepikow brought in another score to make it a five-run contest.
In the sixth, the Longhorns had singles by Stubbs and Johnston sandwiched around a steal produce one run before a RBI-single from Will Crouch (Austin, Texas), a run-scoring double from Teagarden and a RBI-base hit by Maroul put Texas out in front by a score of 13-4. Three consecutive Arkansas singles with two outs in the bottom half of the sixth would make it a 13-5 game, but UT came right back with two unearned runs in the seventh to push ahead 15-5. While the Razorbacks loaded the bases on three walks in the bottom of the seventh and received a RBI-single from Scott Hode and a sacrifice fly to bring in two runs, the Horns came right back with four of their own in the top of the eighth to make the score 19-7. After the Razorbacks added an unearned score in the bottom of the eighth, Texas reliever Clayton Stewart (Angleton, Texas) worked a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth to seal the 19-8 victory. Boone, who struck out six over 6.1 solid innings, picked up the win for UT to improve to 7-4 on the year, while Arkansas starter Shaun Seibert incurred the loss.
Headlining Texas' offense, which saw each starter collect at least one hit, were Teagarden, who tallied a career-high four hits while scoring one run and driving in a pair, Crouch, who went 3-for-6 with two runs scored and one RBI, Hudson, who scored three times and collected three hits, and Johnston, who drove in a career-high six runs while scoring four others and posting two hits. On the other side of the ledger, Arkansas was led by Walker, who went 2-for-4 with one run scored and one RBI, and Tschepikow, who scored one run and drove in two on the night. Of additional note for UT, both Stubbs and Peoples extended their current hit streak to nine games, while Kainer and Wheeless upped their strings to eight and seven games, respectively.
Postgame Notes & Quotes
· 134 runs have now been scored thus far in the Austin Regional, an average of 22.3 runs per game.
· Arkansas is now 30-25 in NCAA Regional play and 40-37 overall in NCAA postseason action.
· With four doubles in the game, the Razorbacks now have 11 doubles and two triples in their three games of the Austin Regional.
·Texas' 19 runs surpassed the most scored by an opponent of the Razorbacks this season (13 - Mississippi State, 3/26).
· The 19 runs allowed were the most by an Arkansas team since Auburn scored 21 against the Hogs on March 19, 2000, in Fayetteville.
· The Longhorns also set a new Arkansas high for hits allowed with 21. UA had allowed 15 hits in three other games this season.
· Arkansas' three sacrifice flies on Sunday night were a season high.
· C Brian Walker's home run in the fifth inning marked his seventh of the season and also marked the first Arkansas home run since May 14 (Scott Hode vs. Alabama), a span of 297 at bats.
· Texas improves to 118-44-1 in NCAA Regional play. The Longhorns are now 62-35 under head coach Augie Garrido in NCAA Regional Tournaments.
· By plating nine runs with two out against the Razorbacks, the UT offense has now scored 172 of 428 (40%) with two outs this season.
· Through four games of the NCAA Austin Regional, Texas has scored now 53 runs, an average of 13.3 runs per game.
· With 21 hits on the day, the Texas offense not only established a season high, but has now tallied 10 or more hits in 35 of 63 games to date and seven straight contests.
· Texas' 19 runs scored marked the third-highest output for UT in NCAA Regional history (21-7 vs. Southern Illinois - 5/22/86; 20-2 vs. Quinnipiac - 6/3/05) dating back to 1947.
· P Randy Boone is now 7-4 on the season and 2-0 in his two postseason starts, going nine innings vs. Oklahoma State, 5/27) and 6.2 innings today.
· C Taylor Teagarden's four hits and two doubles each mark a career high. Teagarden's home run in the third inning marked his fifth of the year. Teagarden is now 10-for-19 (.526) with four runs scored, three doubles, two HR and seven RBI through four NCAA Regional games.
· With two hits on the day, SS Seth Johnston now has 102 this season, which moves him into a tie for eighth place with David Denny (1985) on UT's all-time list.
· Johnston's six RBI mark a career high and team-season high. Additionally, Johnston tallied his 34th multiple-hit game and 17th multiple-RBI game while registering a career-high five RBI. Johnston's triple in the second inning marked his fifth of the season.
· DH Will Crouch established a career-long five-game hitting streak and now has multiple-hit games in three of four regional tournament games. Crouch is 10-for-17 (.588) with 10 runs scored and seven RBI during the regional.
· 2B Robby Hudson now has a hit in 14 of his last 16 games and owns multiple-hit games in four of the last seven games.
· CF Drew Stubbs extended his hitting streak to nine games and has now hit safely in 53 of 63 games this season.
· Stubbs also matched a career-best by stealing two bases. Stubbs now has 31 stolen bases this season and has swiped two bases five times.
· With a two-out RBI single in the first, 1B Chance Wheeless now has a team-leading 23 two-out RBI on the year. Wheeless extending his hitting streak to seven games.
· RF Nick Peoples extended his hitting streak to nine games.
Head Coach Dave Van Horn
On the game: The game just got away from us early. They had a couple of big hits, and we never recovered. I thought we did a good job offensively. I thought we battled, worked a few walks, got double-digit hits, and scored in six of the nine innings, but we just didn't get that big hit, and that's a credit to their pitchers.
On their current pitching situation: They're all available. We'll talk about it again in the morning and see how a couple of guys feel and go from there. It's like I told our team, we've got one game left, if we win it, we've got some more, if not, it's over, so we're just going to use anyone that says they want to go.
Freshman Catcher Brian Walker
On Texas' offensive performance: They hit every mistake we made. We didn't need make the quality pitches when we needed to, and we left the ball over the plate. When you do that to good hitting teams, they're going to hit the ball all around the park.
Head Coach Augie Garrido
Opening statement: It was obviously an offensive game for both teams. We came out with more runs than they did this time. It was a hard-fought game and both teams battled.
On playing in two elimination games today: The whole season is on the line here, and the team responded very well today. Tomorrow will be a separate identity all together. It will be exciting to see what unfolds.
On the pitching staff: Considering the number of innings we have played and one-game mismatch between the two teams [Arkansas having played one game less than Texas], I think we are going to have to ask someone to step up and be a hero. Whoever is feeling the best [between Freshman RHP Kenn Kasparek and Sophomore RHP Kyle McCulloch] will most likely start. We will probably see [Junior RHP] J. Brent Cox come into the game earlier. The strategy was to try to keep him out of the game today.
Junior C Taylor Teagarden
On how he is feeling: I feel pretty good. I have felt good behind the plate and from at-bat to at-bat have felt more and more comfortable. I have actually felt well enough hitting to turn on the ball a little bit.
On if he was surprised to be hitting for power: No. I just have a very relaxed approach at the plate right now. Batting in the seventh hole like I am now, there is not a lot of pressure to hit for power. I am just staying relaxed and getting good pitches to hit. The weather is also hot and the ball is jumping off the bat. The first home run shocked me a bit, but in the second game, I felt I could hit the ball with authority each time up.
Sophomore RHP Randy Boone
On having Junior C Taylor Teagarden behind the plate: It always feels good to have someone back there who has been there before and has the postseason and regional experience that he does. If he is not the best defensive catcher in the nation, he is definitely right up there. It is a big lift to the team to have him back there.
Senior SS Seth Johnston
On his 3-RBI triple in the second inning: Before that at-bat, Coach Garrido came up to me and said to go back to my two-strike approach and just put the bat on the ball. Sure enough, whenever I tried to shorten up and put the bat on the ball, their pitcher [Sophomore LHP James Gilbert] threw a good pitch on the outer half, and I was able to hit it in the right spot.