No. 3 Baseball topples Louisiana, 4-2, to advance to NCAA Regional championship
June 5, 2010
AUSTIN, Texas -- The No. 3 Texas Longhorns received another solid pitching performance as Cole Green and Chance Ruffin combined to scatter seven hits in a 4-2 win over the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns in NCAA Regional action at UFCU Disch-Falk Field on Saturday evening.
The victory gives Texas two chances to beat the winner of Sunday's Louisiana-Rice game (1 p.m.). The Longhorns will play the Ragin' Cajuns-Owls winner at 6:30 p.m. A win on Sunday night gives Texas the regional crown. A loss would set-up a winner-take-all rematch Monday at 1 p.m.
Ruffin offered the late heroics in Saturday's nightcap. The Longhorns closer entered the game with Texas clinging to a 3-1 lead, no outs and runners on first and second. Kyle Olasin's sacrifice bunt attempt down the third baseline resulted in a single and saturated the bases with Ragin' Cajuns. Louisiana cut the lead to one when Matt Goulas hit a ball deep to leftfield for a sacrifice fly, knocking in Justin Robichaux. Ruffin responded by catching Jordan Poirrier and Chad Keefer looking for back-to-back strikeouts, ending the frame.
After Texas (48-11) added an insurance run in the top of the ninth, Ruffin slammed the door by striking out the side on 13 pitches.
Ruffin worked two innings, allowing one infield hit, while striking out five of the seven batters he faced. It marked his 14th save of the season, moving him into a tie with Randy Boone (2007) and Huston Street (2002) for fifth place on the UT single-season list. He also moved into a fourth-place tie with Charlie Thames (2000) and Eric French (1995-97) with 19 career saves.
Green (11-1) allowed two runs on six hits and one walk while striking out five over 7.0 innings to earn the win.
The Longhorns drew first blood in the top of the second inning. Kevin Keyes laced a leadoff single into leftfield and stole second base. A groundout by Russell Moldenhauer moved Keyes to third and he scored on a single to the gap in right centerfield by Kevin Lusson.
Louisiana (38-22) responded with a run in the home half of the second. With two outs, Dillon Guillory, Robichaux and Greg Fontenot strung together three consecutive singles to knot the score at 1-1.
Texas used the long ball to reclaim the lead in the top of the fourth inning. With one out, Keyes deposited a 3-1 offering just shy of the scoreboard in left centerfield for his 14th home run of the season. Two batters later, Lusson hit a solo home run to the identical location, also on a 3-1 pitch, to increase the advantage to 3-1.
The Longhorns' insurance run in the ninth came on a double to the gap in right centerfield by Moldenhauer. Keyes started the rally with a one-out single up the middle. Paul Montalbano pinch-ran for Keyes and scored on Moldenhauer's two-bagger.
Keyes went 3-for-4 with one home run, two runs, one stolen base and one RBI to lead the Longhorns' offensive arsenal. Lusson went 2-for-4 with one run, one home run and two RBI to supplement the attack.
Robichaux was the catalyst of the Louisiana offense, going 3-for-3 with one run.
T.J. Geith (6-2) was saddled with the loss for Rider. He allowed three runs on six hits and one walk while striking out four over 8.0 innings.