Texas traveled to Palo Alto, Calif., looking for an opportunity to bounce back from consecutive losses. Instead, the Longhorns were swept.
Texas (2-5) lost each of its three games to No. 2 Stanford (7-0), capping off the series with a 15-1 defeat on Sunday afternoon that saw the Longhorns surrender more runs in one inning than they had in any of their previous 221 games. The Cardinal jumped out to early 5-0 leads in their first two games against Texas this week, beating the Longhorns 7-2 on Friday and 6-2 on Saturday.
Between the three contests, Texas was outscored 28-5 and outhit 40-13 and have now lost five consecutive games, its longest losing streak since 2001, for just the 12th time in school history. The Longhorns are 2-5 on the season, their worst start in 68 years. Stanford pushed 13 runs across in the fourth inning of Sunday’s victory over Texas, falling eight short of the record 21 runs scored by Wichita State in 1984. The Longhorns allowed the Cardinal to bat around twice and used four pitchers in the frame.
In the first game of the three-game set, Stanford center fielder and leadoff hitter Jake Stewart homered on the second pitch he saw as his squad scored twice in the first inning of the series. The Cardinal extended their lead to 5-0 in the second inning with three two-out runs. Texas was blanked until the eighth inning when senior center fielder Tim Maitland and freshman second baseman Brooks Marlow singled and scored in the frame. Stanford starting pitcher Mark Appel — the nation’s No. 3 prospect, according to ESPN’s Keith Law, tops among college players — allowed just three hits and one run in seven innings of work.
On Saturday, Stanford dominated the early stages of the game and once again scored the first five runs of the contest. Sophomore shortstop Lonnie Kauppila’s RBI double and junior catcher Eric Smith’s sac fly gave the Cardinal a 2-0 advantage after two innings. Sophomore right fielder Austin Wilson led off the fifth frame with a solo home run and junior second baseman Kenny Diekroeger hit a two-run double to extend the lead to 5-0 as Stanford went on to triumph, 6-2.
The Longhorns began the series finale better than the previous two games, going into the bottom of the fourth inning tied at 1-1, following a sac fly by senior first baseman Kevin Lusson that drove in sophomore third baseman Erich Weiss. But the wheels fell off in that fourth frame, when the Cardinal sent 18 batters to the plate. Nine of them notched base hits, three were hit by a pitch, three walked and another reached on an error as UT pitchers John Curtiss, Ricky Jacquez, Parker French and Dillon Peters combined to allow 13 runs in the inning.
Stanford’s starting pitchers — Appel, Brett Mooneyham and John Hochstatter — posted a collective 1.28 ERA and held the Longhorns hitters they faced to a .151 batting average. Meanwhile, the three pitchers Texas started against the Cardinal — Nathan Thornhill, Milner and Curtiss — registered a combined 7.50 ERA and allowed opposing Stanford hitters to bat .357 on the series.
The Longhorns will square off against Houston Baptist Tuesday evening in their next game.
Printed on Monday, February 27, 2012 as: Stanford sweeps UT in three-game series, with little resistance