Courtesy of texassports.com
AUSTIN, Texas – For the second time this week, the No. 23 Texas Longhorns held an opponent to just four hits in a shutout to claim a victory. Parker French, Hoby Milner and Corey Knebel combined for nine scoreless innings as the Longhorns logged a 3-0 win over the Kansas Jayhawks at UFCU Disch-Falk Field on Saturday evening.
French (5-1) earned the win scattering four hits and two walks while striking out three over 7.0 innings. The freshman has not allowed a run in 32.1 innings pitched at UFCU Disch-Falk Field. Hoby Milner retired all four batters he faced in 1.1 innings, including two strikeouts and Knebel retired the last two batters of the game with flyout and a strikeout.
Texas (22-14, 10-4 Big 12) claimed its first lead of the series with a run in the bottom of the first inning. Mark Payton drew a leadoff walk and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Taylor Stell. Erich Weiss followed with a single that scooted under the glove of Kansas second baseman Jordan Dreiling to give Texas a 1-0 lead.
The Longhorns mounted a two-out rally in the bottom of the fourth to tack on a run. With two outs, Kevin Lusson hit a wall-banger to the gap in left centerfield for a double. Jacob Felts followed with an RBI single to centerfield to give Texas a 2-0 advantage.
Texas added an insurance run in the seventh. With two outs, Stell singled to centerfield, moved to second on a passed ball and scored on a single by Weiss to inflate the Longhorns’ cushion to 3-0.
Kansas (16-24, 4-10) twice got a pair of runners in scoring position but were unable to break the scoring seal. In the third innings, Michael Suiter reached on a leadoff walk and Dakota Smith reached on an error by Weiss at third. A sacrifice bunt by Tucker Tharp put both runners in scoring position, but Kevin Kuntz popped up to short to give Kansas two outs. Jordan Etier robbed the Jayhawks of two runs in the inning when he ranged deep up the middle to stab a would-be single by James Stanfield. After falling to his knees, Etier sprung to his feet and threw a laser to first two retire Stanfield by a step.
With one out in the fifth, Suiter reached on a single and Smith doubled to the wall, but Tharp lined out sharply to second base and Kuntz bounced back to French on the mound to end the inning.
The Longhorns also erased a pair of leadoff runners by the Jayhawks with double plays to keep the shutout in tact.
Freshman Wes Benjamin (2-5) was saddled with the loss for Kansas. He yielded three runs on 10 hits and two walks while striking out three over 6.2 innings. Robert Kahana pitched 1.1 scoreless innings of relief, scattering one hit and one walk while fanning two.
Weiss led Texas offensive attack with three hits and two RBI. Walsh and Felts each added a pair of hits as the Longhorns arsenal bounced back with 11 hits after being held to just three on Friday evening.
Texas and Kansas wrap up weekend series action on Sunday with a 1 p.m. contest at UFCU Disch-Falk Field.