411 on the Forty — Part Two: This week in Longhorn sports history

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Over the course of the past two decades, Texas has qualified for the College World Series on nine different occasions, the last of which came two years ago this week.

During that 2018 season, Texas was led by Baseball America All-America second baseman Kody Clemens, who would go on to be selected in third round of the 2018 Major League Baseball Draft by the Detroit Tigers. In the Super Regional against Tennessee Tech in Austin, the Horns dropped the first game to the power-hitting Golden Eagles, 5-4.

Kody Clemens launching his second home run of the evening, a solo shot.

However, the very next day, Texas earned the 4-2 victory, thanks to a two-hit game from Clemens, and stellar pitching from starter Chase Shugart. It gave way to a thrilling game three between two teams who each had a burning desire to be one of the eight teams to go to Omaha.

On Monday, June 11, the first pitch was tossed at noon. What would follow was a game that metaphorically represented a seesaw, going back and forth with Texas taking a 4-0 lead in the third on a DJ Petrinsky home run that followed a solo homer by Clemens earlier in the inning. Tennessee Tech roared back, cutting the Longhorns’ lead to two, (4-2), in the sixth. Fortunately for the Horns, that was all the Golden Eagles could muster that afternoon. Texas claimed a victory in front of its home crowd, and a coveted spot in the College World Series.

Starter Chase Shugart allowed just two hits and an unearned run over six innings, lifting the Texas baseball team to a 4-2 victory over Tennessee Tech in the second game of the NCAA Super Regional (photo courtesy of texassports.com).

Head coach David Pierce, who was all smiles after game three, told the media, “Wow, that was an awesome, awesome game. I mean you lose game one, and then you have to fight and claw your way to win game two. We know it’s another dog fight again today, but that’s one of the best hitting teams in the country and for us to hold them to two runs was pretty impressive. This team is really bonded well and they understand how to pick up each other.”

After a 2019 season in which the Texas baseball team failed to reach the Big 12 Tournament, head coach David Pierce said "I’m not going to sit here and be 27-27 and not make some changes" (photo courtesy of texassports.com).

He then concluded with a statement that summed up the feelings of everyone who had followed Texas baseball throughout that incredible season.

“Just an incredible day.”

Riley Zayas

Riley Zayas is a high school sophomore and freelance journalist from Round Rock, Texas. He began his journalism career as a Sports Illustrated Kids reporter and has since become a regular contributor to Horns Illustrated, covering Texas Longhorn sports. His work also includes Fellowship of Christian Athletes publications, College Baseball Nation and Sports Spectrum, a national christian sports website. He currently serves as the Managing Editor of True To The Cru, covering UMHB athletics. Twitter: @ZayasRiley

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