A late pair of Mountaineer home runs propelled West Virginia over Texas on Friday evening in Austin, 3-2.
It didn’t take long for Mountaineers right-hander Alek Manoah to get bashed with his first hit of the night as Eric Kennedy ripped a single through the left side of the infield to open up the game with one out in the bottom of the first. Following a Kennedy double to right-center field, Longhorn Austin Todd drove home Kennedy on a two-out single to left.
Manoah only allowed the pair of runs on the night and struck out eight Longhorns through seven innings of work. The junior served up seven hits and two walks in the his 11th quality start of the season.
West Virginia (25-14, 9-7 Big 12) couldn’t muster up a single hit until Marques Inman dropped a two out single into left field in the bottom of the seventh inning. Paul McIntosh then struck out swinging to end any threat of a run.
Before Inman’s hit in the seventh, Tevin Tucker reached first base on a two out walk in the top of the sixth inning for the first Mountaineer base runner of the night.
The eighth inning saw a Kevin Brophy walk set up a TJ Lake two-run homer to right field for only the second hit of the night, giving the Mountaineers the 2-1 advantage.
Texas (24-20, 5-10 Big 12) didn’t want to go home quietly however as, in the bottom of the eighth, Ryan Reynolds shot a single through the right side to plate Kennedy and knot the score up at 2-2. Mountaineer right hander Sam Kessler gave up the second run before left hander Nick Snyder served up the first run of the eighth.
In the top of the ninth, Inman knocked the third Mountaineer hit of the night with a solo home run off Matteo Bocchi. Kessler came back on to close it out for the Mountaineers in the bottom half of the ninth and sat down three Longhorn batters in a row.
West Virginia and Texas will continue their series with the second game of the weekend slated for Saturday afternoon at 3:30 p.m.