HOUSTON – Chad Hollingsworth pitched a complete game two-hitter to lead the Texas baseball team past Texas A&M, 4-1, and capture the Houston Regional Championship Monday night at Reckling Park.
Texas (41-19) moves on to a Super Regional where it will face the University of Houston with the site to be announced by early Tuesdaymorning.
The Longhorns won their 35th regional title in school history, including the ninth under head coach Augie Garrido. Texas did it with dominant pitching, holding opponents to five earned runs (1.22 ERA) and a .180 batting average in four games.
Making his first start since March 26, 2013 and just the sixth in his collegiate career, Hollingsworth came through with a gem. The sophomore right-hander put up zero’s on the scoreboard in eight consecutive innings after allowing an unearned run in the first.
Hollingsworth (3-0) along with center fielder Mark Payton were named Co-Most Outstanding Players of the region. Payton had a .500 on-base percentage for the tournament, and on Monday walked three times, stole two bases and scored a run.
After a leadoff walk in the second inning, Hollingsworth retired 10 in a row before hitting a batter in the fifth. He allowed just four more base runners the rest of the night, including just his second hit. On his 128th pitch, he was able to finish what he started, inducing a pop out to third baseman Zane Gurwitz to end the game.
The Longhorns led 2-1 for much of the game until getting some breathing room with two runs in the seventh. C.J Hinojosa, who paced the offense with three hits, hit an RBI double down the left field line to score Payton. Collin Shaw followed with a sacrifice fly to score Madison Carter, giving Texas a 4-1 advantage.
Miscues by both teams early on saw the game tied 1-1 after the first inning. Texas A&M was helped by a throwing error, setting up a sacrifice fly from Cole Lankford to give the Aggies an early edge. The Longhorns tied it up in the bottom half, with Brooks Marlow reaching on a fielding error and scoring on a two-out single through the left side by Tres Barrera.
Texas got the only other run it would need in the fourth. Carter started the inning by singling up the middle, extending his hitting streak to 14 games. Hinojosa then sacrificed him to second base and Collin Shaw reached on an error by the shortstop. After a Kacy Clemens pop out, Zane Gurwitz lined a ball to third base that was misplayed, allowing Carter to score and making it 2-1.
In addition to Hollingsworth and Payton, four more Longhorns landed on the All-Regional Team: second baseman Brooks Marlow, catcher Tres Barrera, outfielder Collin Shaw and designated hitter Madison Carter.
Texas A&M starting pitcher Corey Ray (6-1) was handed his first loss of the season after allowing two runs on four hits in five innings. The Aggies finish the season with a 36-26 record.
Content Courtesy of the UT Athletic Department