It was the sort of cloudy, morose and slightly chilled day that of late has been making Austin seem like Seattle, and is the reason that February baseball sucks. The stadium probably filled about 3k of its possible 6,649, which seems reasonable for a poor-weather early-afternoon Friday game.
Hopefully the weekend attendance is better, but the weather report is more of the same so I'm not holding out much hope for Austinites to represent. On to the game:
Contrary to texassports.com's write-up, the Longhorns drew first blood in the bottom half of the first by playing classic Augie-ball. A Loy leadoff single followed by an Etier bunt-single, a Moldenhauer walk, and a Kevin Keyes groundout netted the first run. Rowe capped off the scoring with a bases clearing double.
This was all the scoring that Taylor Jungmann and the horns would need. Jungmann did not locate especially well, but he battled when he got down in the count and really seemed to come up with his best pitches w/2 outs and runners on, a really positive indication of his competitiveness and ability to win sans his "best stuff", which has always been the apropos cliché of great pitchers.
Kyle Lusson, Connor Rowe, Cameron Rupp and Tant Shepherd each had multi-hit games, with Rowe netting three knocks. Moldenhauer and Keyes were the lone Longhorn starters to go hitless. Keyes had some hard hit outs and was taking big hacks with runners on.
If there was any drawback to the game and a potential for future worry it was Moldenhauer's tentativeness at the plate. My inkling is that he just had a bad game and he should get a nice matchup today against UNM righty Willy Kessler.
The bullpens of both teams fared pretty well, scattering hits and allowing zero runs.
If your interested, the jackanapes that occupy the buses behind right-center were at their mudslinging worst/best. I don't usually harp or homilize on the morality of fans, but those guys just have absolutely no cognizance whatsoever about where they are or how many kids are within earshot of there beer-sullied ill-conceived denigrations. I think I would probably care less about "the children" if I found anything they said humorous, but mostly they shout gems like this one I overheard on my trek into the stadium: "Hey, hey, hey, hey, seriously, what conference do you play for? Seriously, hey, what is it called? The WAC? Yeah, it's the WORST ATHLETIC CONFERENCE." The genius is in its simplicity I guess.
On a bright note of fans vs. opposing players were the Iron Spikes, who sat in most of the final section down the third baseline, and their more positive interactions with Left Fielder Chris Jaurez. They cheered for him, only slightly derisively, when he made a play, and when he missed the cutoff man on a Connor Rowe single one waggish Iron Spike yelled, "goddamnit Chris, keep your head in the game." The more things change, the more they stay exactly the same.
On tap for the game today is hard throwing righty Brandon Workman vs. the aforementioned righty Willy Kessler. Last year Workman was, in a word, inconsistent. He sometimes just started trying to fire fastballs by guys and forgot about using his other pitches. I'm very interested to see what sort of progress he has made in the offseason.