Austin Regional: Texas Eliminates Fairfield, Advances to Super Regional
By Steve Parkhurst
June 7, 2021
AUSTIN, TX — The NCAA Austin Regional came to an end Sunday night as the Texas Longhorns defeated the Fairfield Stags 12–2
Jack Erbeck, making his first appearance of 2021, got the start for Fairfield, he was up against left-hander Pete Hansen for Texas.
Mike Antico (2-for-2) led off the game by taking a four-pitch walk as Erbeck tried to settle in. Erbeck would load the bases with a walk. The fourth walk of the inning gave Texas a 1–0 lead with two outs. After 28 pitches, Fairfield went to the bullpen. Jason Hebner took the mound and got a strike out on Trey Faltine to end the top of the first inning.
Texas played small-ball in the second inning and forced throwing errors by the Fairfield defense to increase the lead. Zach Zubia singled with one out to right-center and drove in a run. After another walk to load the bases with one out, Bill Currier went to his bullpen again. Cam Williams brought home two runs with a base hit to center field and Texas led 5–0.
Having already plated two runs in the third, Douglas Hodo III hit a two-out bases loaded triple to right-center to clear the bases and a Texas rout was on with the 10–0 lead.
Fairfield countered with back-to-back one-out doubles to get on the scoreboard in the third. Trailing 10–1, a throwing error at third base added a run before the inning was out.
Back-to-back batters hit by a pitch loaded the bases for Texas with one out in the fifth. A single by Faltine brought home two more runs and Texas once again led by ten, 12–2.
Hansen made his exit with two out in the seventh inning to a round of applause. Hansen struck out thirteen and only allowed one earned run.
A trio of Texas pitchers shut down the Stags the rest of the way to secure the 12–2 victory.
“That was a dominating performance,” said Texas Head Coach of Hansen’s outing. “Kid’s never pitched in a postseason game, Covid-freshman, goes out and just dominates.”
“They just ran out of pitching, I can tell you that for sure,” Pierce said of Fairfield.
Asked if there is any such thing as a regional being too easy, Hansen replied, “There’s no such thing.”
The Longhorns will host a Super Regional in Austin next weekend. The Stags return home to Connecticut after a 39–5 season that surprised many and set up the Fairfield program for continued success in the future.