Stranded Runners Lead to Loss Against No. 11 Texas


By DJ Jamiel for WVUsports.com
May 03, 2014 07:43 PM
 
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Catcher Cam O'Brien finished 3-for-3 with a walk on Saturday against Texas.
All-Pro Photography/Dale Sparks Photo
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - Despite out-hitting their opponent 11-6, the WVU baseball team fell 2-0 to No. 11 Texas on Saturday afternoon at Hawley Field, evening the series at one game apiece.
 
In Hawley Field's final weekend, a crowd of 1,624 packed the stands, representing the third largest attendance figure in the parks history.
 
The loss drops West Virginia to 25-17 overall and 8-8 within the Big 12. Texas improved to 34-14 overall on the season and 11-9 within conference play.
 
WVU stranded seven men in scoring position, and 12 total base runners, as they were unable to take the series win.
 
Redshirt sophomore left-hander Ross Vance (3-1) was issued his first career loss, allowing two runs on six hits in 8.1 innings of work. Vance struck out four and walked one.
 
West Virginia had runners on second and third with two outs in the third inning, but senior first baseman Ryan McBroom flew out to end the threat and the game stayed scoreless.
 
The Longhorns tallied the eventual game-winning run in the fourth inning. Texas shortstop C.J. Hinojosa hit a ball to center field scoring Madison Carter, who reached with a one-out single to left field and advanced to second on a ground out.
 
West Virginia loaded the bases in the fourth inning with back-to-back singles from redshirt junior right fielder Brad Johnson and junior catcher Cam O'Brien. Senior shortstop Michael Constantini then drew a two-out walk, but a fly out by junior shortstop Taylor Munden ended the frame.
 
Johnson and O'Brien led all Mountaineers batters with three hits. O'Brien reached base in all four plate appearances. Junior second baseman Billy Fleming added two hits.
 
A single through the left side by Zane Gurwitz made it 2-0 in the seventh, plating Hinojosa from second base, who was issued a leadoff walk.
 
West Virginia put runners on the corners in the bottom of the seventh with one out, but McBroom grounded into a 6-4-3 inning-ending double play.
 
Texas starter Nathan Thornhill picked up a no-decision as he only went 4.0 shutout innings. Thornhill allowed seven hits, struck out three and walked one. Reliever Chad Hollingsworth (2-0) took the win, allowing one hit with one walk in 2.0 innings. John Curtiss picked up his eighth save of the season, allowing three hits in the final 3.0 innings with one strikeout.
 
West Virginia will look to take the series tomorrow as first pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m. The game will be the final game ever played at Hawley Field, as it will also be Senior Day. A link to the live video and live stats is available on WVUsports.com. The radio broadcast will be on select affiliates of the Mountaineer Sports Network from IMG College.



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