Texas’ offense struggled again on Tuesday against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi as they were shut out for most of the game and could not deliver hits when they needed them most, losing 6-4 in 10 innings.
The Horns played more sloppy baseball committing two errors on the day as well as multiple mental mistakes. The pitching staff also struggled, allowing five earned runs in an 8-pitcher effort. Freshman Connor Mayes surrendered three of those earned runs in the tenth inning to suffer his first loss of the season.
Texas did not score its first run until the seventh inning, when a single by freshman Bret Boswell brought home freshman catcher Michael Cantu. Then, sophomore Tres Barrera scored on a wild pitch to cut the deficit to one. In the ninth, Texas tied it thanks to an RBI double by freshman Joe Baker that brought home senior Taylor Stell. They would add one more in the tenth when senior Collin Shaw brought home junior Ben Johnson on a ground out, but that was two short of what they needed.
The pivotal offensive play for the Islanders came in the tenth inning, when with a 1-run lead, Cody Clarke dropped a single in between three Texas fielders that brought home two to push the A&M-CC lead to 6-3.
Texas travels to Stillwater this weekend to take on Oklahoma State in a Big XII conference series.
“It was pretty easy to see the difference between their performance through the first six innings versus the last four innings, and I think that’s where you see the separation. You see what was in there, and that wasn’t coming out in the early innings. We gave them opportunities by not getting our outs on time and giving extra bases. It was a big win for them. They got some timely hitting in the home run, and the three runs in the top of the tenth, I think it was. We changed dramatically at a point where we thought we were going to lose the game. In the seventh inning, there was a huge change. We just see that from a coaching standpoint as they started really competing because the end of the game was near, and they were behind. They turned it up. We didn’t get anything going in the first six innings.”
“I don’t know about the crossroads thing. We need to play hard for nine innings, from beginning to end. That’s the idea, that’s how we’ve run this program since I’ve been here, and we’ve had trouble doing that consistently. We’ve played the first half of the game lackluster a lot, especially on Tuesdays. In the second half, we play a much better game, but you’ve got to use every inning if you’re going to be consistent and you’re going to be good offensively.”
“It’s that winning and losing. They haven’t bought into winning the inning. They’re playing the way their subconscious has been trained for years to play; we’ll win it at the end of the game just so we win the game. That’s the only thing I can go to. That’s why we adopted the inning-by-inning approach to make it more competitive and a lot easier to compete offensively and defensively to win the inning because you can see the beginning and the end of it. So if they score, you want to score more. You want to compete in every inning. We haven’t accepted that philosophy and applied it. They know about it. They haven’t applied it.”
“We only scored three runs in Nebraska. Marlow has been comfortable. He led off for us at that run in the end. We’re trying to get him in a familiar place. CJ can control the bat and the two-hole may get him from over swinging and get some bunts down and that kind of thing. That was the thought behind that. Ben has been our most consistent hitter, so hopefully those two guys plus the nine-hole hitter can get on.”
“I think the big thing is that we didn’t apply the inning-to-inning philosophy and compete for every inning.”
“What I said to the team after the game is this is really painful. We’ll sort through this and come back out with a plan that includes getting better and learning from what’s happened here. That is what we talk about all the time and that’s the way we’re going to handle it. We trust the players. We respect the players. We think we have a good team, but it hasn’t played well. They’re disappointed. We’re disappointed. All of us collectively have to fix that.”