For the fourth time this season, Texas No. 14 failed to score a run. This time around it was even more painful, as the result was a dropped series to conference opponent Kansas State.
To add insult to injury, two of Kansas State’s three conference wins have now come against the Longhorns. The Wildcats have a season record of 16-21 and were thought of as a break in Texas’ daunting schedule.
Head coach David Pierce was in a reflective mood following the loss, noting that he is going to shake some things up in order to create a spark.
“We let a lot of people down today. Mostly ourselves,” Head coach David Pierce said. “The thing now is that we’ve got to make some changes. We’ve got to look at some approaches and do some things differently. It’s just that time to make some adjustments.”
The first change that will likely be made, and one that Pierce noted separately will be the starting pitcher on Sundays. True freshman Coy Cobb has held the role for the entirety of the season, but after another lackluster performance against Kansas State (2.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB), Pierce said his time is up.
One of the bright spots to pull from Sunday is that the bullpen finally had its moment in the sun. The combination of freshmen Ty Madden, sophomore Tristan Stevens and redshirt freshman Cole Quintanilla was excellent coming out of the bullpen.
The trio tallied seven innings and allowed only one earned run on three hits. Though Madden had the worst day of the three (2.2 IP, 3 H, 1 ER), he is the most likely candidate to take over the Sunday job from Cobb. Madden has been a mid-week starter in spots this season and has the shown the ability needed in the role.
Stevens and Quintanilla were dominant in their outings. The two each threw for two or more innings, allowed no runs and were hitless. Stevens’ performance was especially uplifting as he’d struggled in multiple innings in previous appearances. Quintanilla, who has been off lately, showed dominance early in the season and may be getting back to his old self.
“That was a big deal for Tristan because he’s been good for maybe three outs or one inning and has struggled in his second time out,” Pierce said. “And to do what he did today, it was a very bright spot. And I thought Cole was outstanding. Cole is what he was a couple weeks ago, three weeks ago.”
This team will need more of a boost than a Sunday starter change. This team needs some leadership. When asked who his team can rely on to right the ship, Pierce responded with three names that he’s counting on to be the voices in the locker room.
“We designated three captains when we were out of town a couple weeks ago,” Pierce said. “Those guys need to take this responsibility because those three guys were voted by their team. That’s Michael McCann, Bryce Elder and Ryan Reynolds.
Texas will return to action, possibly with some new faces, on Tuesday as Lamar University travels to Austin. First pitch at UFCU Disch-Falk Field is set for 6:30 P.M.
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