The No. 5 Longhorns entered this weekend’s series against Oklahoma State with some serious momentum, winners of 10 of their last 12 games and looking to win their second conference series in as many tries.
They came home disappointed.
Texas (17-7, 4-2 Big 12) was unable to maintain its three-run lead in the third and decisive game of the series, losing 10-3 at Allie P. Reynolds Stadium, a loss that gives the Cowboys (18-6, 3-3) the 2-1 final series advantage.
The Longhorns got the first run on the board in the top of the first inning as Lucas Kephart’s fielder’s choice groundout brought in Mark Payton, who had hit a double two pitches into the game.
At the top of the fifth, Payton and Brandon Loy hit consecutive singles, and then both advanced a base each with an Erich Weiss sacrifice bunt. With runners in scoring position, Kephart again brought in Payton with a hit to right field, and Loy scored thanks to a sacrifice squeeze by Tant Shepherd.
They would be the only runs Texas scored all day, and it wasn’t nearly enough. The Cowboys answered in the bottom of the fifth inning with a two-run homer off of Cole Green, score once more in the sixth, then piled on seven runs in the seventh as Texas’ bullpen melted down, allowing six hits and four walks in the inning.
“Today’s game showed the importance of every inning and not allowing one inning to cost you the ball game like the seventh inning did,” said Texas head coach Augie Garrido.
It’s a loss made even harder for the Longhorns not only because of the lopsided score or the fact that it gives them their first series defeat of the season, but because it was a game Texas was in control of at the onset.
“We got some early momentum and got some runs, but when it was on our side, we didn’t produce enough runs to create separation,” Garrido said. “You could slowly feel the momentum shift to their side and we were unable to stop it.”
Green (1-2) got the no-decision, pitching five innings and giving up three earned runs with eight strikeouts, and the loss goes to freshman Kirby Bellow (0-1).