There’s nothing quite like a little sibling rivalry to ignite a baseball team.
Kody and Kacy Clemens each crushed two run homers to fuel a strong offensive performance in the Longhorns 6-3 series opening victory over the Kansas State Wildcats.
“I think tonight just shows what kind of potential we do have in the lineup,” Kacy Clemens told 104.9 FM radio after the game. “If we can put it together more often and be more consistent, we’ll see more wins for sure.”
Starter Morgan Cooper pitched like he was back in his award-studded freshman season and kept the Longhorns competitive in the tight early going.
The redshirt sophomore turned in six innings of one-run ball, with his only blemish coming off a fielding error. Cooper also added seven strikeouts and scattered just four hits in a strong outing following a rough start last weekend against Oklahoma.
“He showed the kind of leadership that we’ve been looking for from him,” Garrido told 104.9 FM. “It carries over to everybody else. When they see one player do it, they have a tendency to realize that they can do it.”
Texas got on the board after a sac bunt and an RBI single in the second. But in the third, shortstop Kody Clemens decided to break the limits of small ball for a much quicker form of offense.
After a single by sophomore left fielder Travis Jones, the freshman crushed a breaking ball over the right field fence for his second home run of the season to give the Longhorns a 3-0 lead.
First baseman Kacy Clemens, though, was not about to get outdone by his younger brother.
Four innings later, with the score 4-1 in the Longhorns favor, the junior smashed a two-out pitch to right for his third homerun of the season, giving Texas a commanding 6-1 advantage.
“I said we were tied in home runs for a good 45-minutes to an hour before I had to jump one up him,” Kacy told 104.9. “It’s pretty cool to just be playing on the same team as your brother, much less starting on the same infield together and both getting a home run in the same game. It was a pretty special night.”
Friday’s win over the last place Wildcats was not enough to erase the memory of a tough loss last Tuesday to Texas A&M–Corpus Christi, or turn the season around, but its importance was not lost on Garrido.
“It’s always important to get every win and the first win [of the series] does set the tone,” Garrido told 104.9 FM. “We’ve had enough losses to learn from.”
Texas will send left-handed ace Ty Culbreth (5-2, 2.31) to the mound Saturday at 2 p.m. in search of a series victory.