02 Jun

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Texas baseball rides Kingham, Clemens into Austin Regional championship game

Second baseman Kody Clemens smacked a pair of home runs to help lift the Texas baseball team to an 8-3 win over Texas A&M (photo courtesy of texassports.com).

By Steve Habel, Senior Contributing Writer

AUSTIN, Texas — Nolan Kingham wasn’t at 100 percent for Texas’ winners’ bracket NCAA regional game Saturday against rival Texas A&M after battling a virus all week, but that situation turned out to be a blessing for the Longhorns’ ace pitcher.

Kingham’s illness likely kept him from being too emotional when he went to the mound against the Aggies, and he used that focus, calm and collectiveness to handcuff Texas A&M as the Longhorns rolled to an 8-3 win before a raucous capacity crowd of 7,046 at UFCU Disch-Falk Field.

Texas (39-20) advances to play the winner of Sunday afternoon’s regional elimination game between the Aggies and Indiana. The latter beat Texas Southern, 6-0, earlier Saturday to earn another shot at Texas A&M, who handed the Hoosiers a 10-3 thrashing Friday in the tournament’s opening game.

The Longhorns now own a record of

Steve Habel is a senior contributing writer for Horns Illustrated. He has covered Texas sports since 1989 and was this magazine’s senior editor for 24 years. You can follow him on twitter @stevehabel .