AUSTIN (KXAN) — No. 9 Texas lost its super regional series opener to No. 8 East Carolina Friday 13-7 at Lewis Field at Clark-LeClair Stadium.
In a rare occurrence, Texas’ ace pitcher Pete Hansen struggled against the East Carolina offense and allowed five earned runs witjh seven hits in only four innings pitched.
Hansen had a lead before he took the mound. Murphy Stehly delivered a 2-run home run in the first inning to get things going, but then the Longhorns offense went dormant.
East Carolina responded in the bottom of the frame, scoring three runs to take the lead.
The fourth inning brought the second awakening by the Pirates, Jacob Starling delivered a two-run shot off of Texas pitcher Zane Morehouse. Then, Zach Agnos brought in another run courtesy of a single, to make it 6-2 East Carolina.
The lead grew to 7-2 before the Texas offense would show signs of life.
Ivan Melendez continued to separate himself from the rest of the pack in the UT record books with a monster solo home run to bring his season total to 31.
Then, Stehly followed with his second home run of the game to bring Texas within three.
Doug Hodo III put the Longhorns on the Pirates’ heels by delivering a solo homer in the seventh inning to make the score 7-5.
East Carolina added some insurance in the bottom of that inning but Texas got back in the game thanks to two runs in the eighth to make it a one-run game.
However, a huge mistake occurred by Texas opened up the game for the Pirates.
In the bottom of the eighth, Alec Makarewicz hit one deep to left-centerfield, Texas outfielders Eric Kennedy and Hodo III both ran after it, but there was some confusion as to who would make the play but Hodo III would leap in the air to attempt to make the catch.
The ball popped out of his glove as he was coming down and subsequently went over the fence for a home run, that would make the score 9-7 ECU.
The Pirates never looked back adding four more runs to win the game 13-7.
Texas now faces elimination in Game 2 at 11 a.m. Saturday. If the Longhorns win on Saturday, the teams will play a deciding game Sunday.