WVU Release Mountaineers Fall in Saturday’s Twin Bill

Keenan Cummings

Fact Based and Wonderful
Sep 16, 2007
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (May 7, 2022) – The West Virginia University baseball team dropped a pair of games to No. 18 Texas in a Big 12 Conference doubleheader on Saturday at Wagener Field at Monongalia County Ballpark.

The Mountaineers fell, 5-2, in Game 1, before suffering an 11-0 loss in seven innings in Game 2. Junior right-handed pitcher Jacob Watters and sophomore left-hander Ben Hampton were hit with losses on the mound for WVU (27-18, 9-8 Big 12), while left-handers Pete Hansen and Lucas Gordon earned wins for the Longhorns (34-16, 11-9 Big 12).

“We have to challenge (our) pride and competitiveness,” WVU coach Randy Mazey said. “(Our) backs are against the wall again, so we’ll see how they come out (on Sunday). It’s just a pride thing at this point.”

In Game 1, Watters was nearly unhittable in the early going, striking out five batters in the first two innings. He also got out of a two-on, two-out jam in the third to keep it a scoreless contest.

In the fourth, though, Texas took a 1-0 lead with a leadoff, solo home run. Then, a second solo blast in the sixth doubled the Longhorns’ lead.

Despite the two homers, Watters orchestrated one of the best outings of his career. The Rocky Gap, Virginia, native struck out a career-high 15 batters with just one walk in 6.1 innings and 115 pitches. He left the game with the Mountaineers in a 2-0 hole in the seventh inning.

Trailing, 4-0, after UT extended its lead, redshirt junior catcher Dayne Leonard cut the deficit in half in the bottom of the seventh with a two-run homer to get West Virginia on the board. It marked the backstop’s third big fly of the year.

Texas got a run back in the eighth, though, to push its lead back to 5-2. In the ninth, WVU brought the tying run to the plate but a fly out to right field ended the game.

Sophomore outfielder Braden Barry went 3-for-3 in the loss, while Leonard had the two RBI.

Texas struck quickly in Game 2, opening the scoring with a two-run homer in the top of the first inning. UT added on with runs in the second and fourth and a four-spot in the fifth to make it 8-0.

Later, the Longhorns scored another run in the six and two more in the seventh.

For WVU, senior outfielder Austin Davis and freshman infielder Alex Khan tallied the squad’s two hits in the nightcap. Hampton started the game on the mound, allowing four runs (three earned) on seven hits with six strikeouts and two walks in 3.1 innings of work.

Up next, WVU and Texas meet in the series finale of this weekend’s three-game set on Sunday afternoon at the Mon. First pitch is set for 1 p.m. ET.

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