Texas baseball offense does just enough to defeat Abilene Christian 3-1

Vicente Montalvo

After giving up a run in the first inning, the Texas baseball team found itself struggling to take the lead for much of Saturday’s game against the Abilene Christian Wildcats. That would change in the seventh inning when experienced redshirt junior infielder Zach Zubia stepped to the plate.

Zubia exuded a calm demeanor in the batter’s box, knowing he had been in a tied-ballgame situation with a consequential chance to give his team the lead numerous times. Instead of trying to do too much, Zubia did just enough. He connected with a pitch and sent it up the middle as the runner crossed home plate to give Texas its first lead of the afternoon.

The Longhorns never looked back and defeated Abilene Christian 3-1.

Texas found a way to win a hard-fought contest with resiliency and patience in the batter’s box. Head coach David Pierce said he knew the Wildcats were going to come out of the gate motivated and fired up after having been shut out in Friday’s contest.

“Anybody that understands this game should have expected a close game,” Pierce said. “They made all the routine plays, (but) we were fortunate to win the game.”

After scoring a season-high 18 runs in Friday’s game, Texas’ offense struggled early on to make any kind of impact as they failed to bring home a runner multiple times.

In the first inning, the Longhorns found themselves with runners on first and second base with only one out. It looked like Texas was going to pick up where they left off Friday night, but instead, a batter grounded into a double play, ending the inning scoreless.

Instead of getting down on themselves, the Texas batters stayed focused. The Longhorns have faced multiple adverse situations this season when the game was not going their way, but Pierce said the dugout remains calm through thick and thin.

“The no-panic mentality is fun,” Pierce said. “You have to show up every single day and put your work in.”

Texas’ work paid off with a breakthrough in the sixth frame as they managed to tie the ballgame. The offense brought home the game-winning runs in the next two frames for a final score of 3-1.

Instead of trying to do too much in the batter’s box, Pierce applauded the team’s offense for playing within their abilities.

“The key is not trying to be the hero but (to) just go and have a good at-bat,” Pierce said. “Just go do your job.”

Texas finished with only seven hits on the day, but the Longhorns came together when they needed it most, and no individual was too heavily relied upon.

With the win against the Wildcats, the Longhorns officially captured their twelfth consecutive victory as they continue to find different ways to defeat opponents. Pierce credited the entire team for buying into the program the coaching staff has built.

“I think they put the time in because they’ve seen the results,” Pierce said. “They like being at the park. It’s very rewarding as a coach.”