GREENVILLE, NC — Texas and East Carolina will play for a place in the College World Series on Sunday.
Having never met at a baseball field before this weekend, Texas and East Carolina split the first two games in this super region. The Pirates (46-20) recorded a 13-7 win at Clark-LeClair Stadium on Friday. Texas (46-20) rallied a day later to a 9-8 conquest.
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Texas shuts down East Carolina and books another trip to Omaha
Texas secured the Greenville Super Regional crown with an 11-1 win over East Carolina. That performance puts the Longhorns in the College World Series for the 38th time in school history.
Texas meets Notre Dame later this week in Omaha in the opener. Rival teams like Oklahoma, Texas A&M, and Arkansas have also reached the College World Series.
East Carolina ended its season with a 46-21 record. The Pirates wanted to reach the College World Series for the first time.
Texas moves within three of its 38th trip to the College World Series
After eight innings at Clark-LeClair Stadium, Texas leads 10-1 over East Carolina. While giving up two walks and not conceding any hits, relief pitcher Travis Sthele has led UT through the last two innings.
Texas goes into its bullpen after receiving six solid innings from Tristan Stevens
As Texas got back on the field after the seventh inning, Tristan Stevens wandered into the bullpen area to hug his teammates. The sixth-grader allowed five hits, three walks and one run over a six-inning start. Five of his 101 pitches hit a batter.
Last year, Stevens was the pitcher of record in UT’s Super Regional win over South Florida. Stevens had eight hits and four runs over 5 2/3 innings in the 12-4 win.
Travis Sthele (3-1, 6.40 ERA) is the next pitcher for Texas.
With Texas leading 10-1, Tristan Stevens gets through the fifth inning
After East Carolina brought on two runners to lead off the bottom of the fifth inning, Texas began getting rid of reliever Jared Southard in his bullpen. However, David Pierce did not have to make a pitching change. Tristan Stevens got a double play confirmed by video review and a groundout to end the inning.
Stevens has thrown 84 pitches so far. He conceded four hits and had two walks.
Trey Faltine extends Texas lead with his 15th home run
In the fifth inning, Texas shortstop Trey Faltine became the first longhorn to find out ECU reliever Garrett Saylor. After UT was held without a hit through Saylor’s first two innings of work, Faltine led off the frame with a solo homer.
That was Faltine’s 15th home run that year. Those 15 home runs would have led the Texas offense in 10 of the previous 11 seasons. Instead, they currently rank third in the UT list behind Ivan Melendez (32 homers) and Murphy Stehly (19 homers).
Garrett Saylor is fielding for East Carolina while Tristan Stevens completes his fourth inning of work
The fifth Pirate starting tonight, East Carolina’s Garrett Saylor, had some success against Texas. Saylor has kept Texas scoreless for his two innings. Saylor hit two longhorns but didn’t allow a hit.
Saylor threw 58 pitches in Saturday’s game.
Meanwhile, Tristan Stevens got Texas through the first four innings. Stevens has allowed three hits and a run. Texas still leads 9-1.
Texas builds on their early lead as East Carolina changes pitchers twice
For the second straight inning, Texas forced East Carolina to make a call to his bullpen. The Pirates actually made two pitching changes when CJ Mayhue replaced Trey Yesavage and Josh Grosz then replaced Mayhue.
Given those three pitches, Texas accumulated five hits. Eric Kennedy, Murphy Stehly, Austin Todd and Skyler Messinger all drove in runs as the Longhorns extended their lead to 9-1.
East Carolina hits the scoreboard after super regional resumes
East Carolina quickly brushed away a weather delay that lasted nearly five hours and got back to work. Pirates backup pitcher Trey Yesavage, who was called from the bullpen just before play was halted, stayed on the mound and he pulled back two longhorns to end the top half of the first inning.
In the bottom half of the inning, East Carolina got their offense going with two straight singles. Leadoff hitter Zach Agnos eventually hit the Pirates’ first run with a sacrificial fly.
After a nearly five-hour delay, Texas and East Carolina got down to playing ball
The NCAA has announced that Texas and East Carolina will resume game three of their Superregional at 10:15 p.m. ET. A weather delay was called around 5:25 a.m.
If play resumes, Texas will lead 4-0 in the first inning, with one at the top. Silas Ardoin will bat at first base with a runner.
Texas strikes first, but the weather strikes again in the first inning
Texas wasted no time in making a statement in Greenville. To start the first inning, Douglas Hodo III reached base with an infield single and Eric Kennedy walked. That set up Ivan Melendez, who scored 2-0 against ECU pitcher Danny Beal.
On the first field after a hill meet between Beal and catcher Ben Netwon, Melendez lined a baseball over the fence in left field. The home run was the 32nd of Melendez’s season. In the Division I record books, that 32 home runs ranks 13th all-time. This number also established a new single-season standard for the BBCOR bat era.
After UT cleanup hitter Murphy Stehly was hit by a pitch, ECU made a pitching change. Texas then took a 4-0 lead when Skyler Messinger drove in Stehly with a single from Trey Yesavage.
With an out in the top half of the first inning, action at Clark-LeClair Stadium was halted when the afternoon’s second weather delay took effect. A restart time was not announced.
Texas starts veteran pitcher Tristan Stevens against ECU’s Danny Beal
Although both teams are expected to empty their bullpens today, Tristan Stevens (6-6, 5.16 ERA) and Danny Beal (5-1, 4.03 ERA) were flagged as the starting pitchers for Texas and ECU. Stevens has already thrown 23 pitches in two short appearances this weekend. Beal recorded two quick outs and issued a walk on Saturday.
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Stevens has played in 24 games this season, but the sixth-grader last started on April 30. He was the starting pitcher last year as Texas booked its 37th trip to the College World Series and wrapped up its super region against South Florida.
This will be Beal’s second start of the season.
Texas and East Carolina have a history of do-or-die games in Super Regionals
This is the seventh time UT has reached the third game of a super region. So far, Texas is 5-1 in these competitions. East Carolina was beaten in its only previous appearance in a superregion winner-takes-all contest.