AUSTIN (KXAN) – After suffering a loss in the series opener against Kansas Friday evening, the Texas baseball team bounced back with an impressive 6-2 victory Saturday to even the series.

The Longhorns have been searching for consistency in the starting rotation behind regular Friday starter Lucas Gordon and got a major boost in Saturday’s win. Lebarron Johnson Jr. returned to starting after a number of strong outings of the bullpen and made the Texas coaching staff look awful smart for the decision.

Johnson went seven strong innings allowing just one run while striking out 12 Jayhawks. That is the redshirt sophomore’s third straight outing where he’s gone at least five innings and allowed one or zero runs.

Coming in after Johnson Jr. was Ace Whitehead who held Kansas scoreless in the eighth before allowing an earned run in the ninth. Andre Duplantier II came in relief of Whitehead with the bases loaded and recorded the final two outs to earn his first save since 2020.

The offense provided a spark early with one run in the second and five more in the fourth. Freshman Jared Thomas notched four of the Longhorns 12 hits. This comes after two hits in the series opener for Thomas.

Dylan Campbell had the lone long ball of the day to lead off the fourth inning. Tanner Carlson and Mitchell Daly added RBI hits before Thomas’ brought in the sixth and final run with a triple.

The series finale is set for Sunday at 1:00 p.m. at Hoglund Ballpark in Lawrence.