Baseball, WVU Sports

Gordon, Brown hand Texas a 12-2 victory against No. 6 WVU to stay alive in Big 12 title hunt

MORGANTOWN — For at least one day, Texas rained on West Virginia’s championship parade.

Longhorns’ starter Lucas Gordon dominated, holding No. 6 WVU to just four hits over seven scoreless innings, as Texas remained alive in the Big 12 title chase with a 12-2 victory inside UFCU Disch-Falk Field in Austin, Texas.

The Mountaineers (39-14, 15-7 Big 12) still need just one win over the final two games of the series — Game 2 is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Friday — to claim a share of their first-ever Big 12 baseball championship, but Texas (36-18, 13-9) made sure it didn’t happen Thursday.


With WVU losing, No. 25 Oklahoma State moved to within one game in the conference standings behind the Mountaineers after a 13-2 victory against Oklahoma, while Texas and Kansas State are now two games back. Kansas State pulled off a 7-6 walk-off win against TCU on Thursday.

Gordon and teammate Porter Brown did the damage for the Longhorns.

While Gordon held the Mountaineers’ offense in check, Brown hit three home runs and collected eight RBIs as a one-man wrecking crew.

He added an RBI single in the first inning and then hit a three-run blast to right field that gave Texas a 6-0 lead in the second.

Brown, a transfer from TCU who now has 12 home runs and 53 RBIs this season, also hit two-run homers in the fourth and sixth innings.

All of it came against WVU pitchers who struggled from the beginning.

WVU manager Randy Mazey elected to save his top two starters, Ben Hampton and Blaine Traxel, and decided to go with freshman Carson Estridge.

Except Estridge (3-1) gave up three straight singles to start the game, before Brown hit his run-scoring single with one out.

Estridge got out of that inning by striking out Eric Kennedy and Tanner Carlson to end the frame, but he got in trouble again in the second inning and was pulled for Maxx Yehl, who gave up Brown’s first home run and the rout was on.

It tied the worst margin of defeat for the Mountaineers this season, and just the second time WVU has been beaten by 10 runs. Arizona scored a 15-5 victory over WVU back in February.

Gordon (6-1) struck out eight and walked just one over seven innings.

WVU avoided the shutout in the eighth inning off reliever Chase Lummus, when Braden Barry doubled home J.J. Wetherholt, who singled and took second base on a wild pitch.

Wetherholt’s base hit gave him a seven-game hit streak for the nation’s leading hitter, not that it helped the Mountaineers much in this one. WVU pinch hitter Evan Smith singled home Caleb McNeely in the ninth for the final score.

Dylan Campbell also added a solo home run and three hits for the Longhorns, who have won four of their last five meetings against the Mountaineers. WVU also committed three errors in the game.

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