It took 13 innings for the baseball team to top 17th-ranked Baylor University by a score of 2-1 at Clay Gould Ballpark on Tuesday.
The Mavericks and Bears spent eight innings tied at one run a piece before freshman infielder Tyler Rice drew a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the 13th to win it for UTA.
“We got it done, thankfully. It’s not pretty, but we’ll take it,” sophomore outfielder Phillip Childs said.
The Mavericks used eight pitchers on Tuesday night. Their bullpen combined for 11 ⅓ shutout innings before the offense was able to chip in the game-winning run.
“They did a great job,” head coach Darin Thomas said. “That’s two runs in our last two games, eight innings on Saturday and however many we went tonight. If you do that and play defense, you got a chance.”
The Mavericks got a big night in the field from Childs, who has taken over centerfield duties after a hand injury to starter Connor Aube.
Childs started off the night with a diving catch in center against the first Baylor batter of the night. Later in the ninth inning, he hustled into the gap to glove a line shot into center that would’ve given Baylor the lead.
“He can do that, that’s his best tool is playing defense,” Thomas said.
Thomas added that with the team banged up heading into a weekend road series, the Mavericks will continue to plug guys in and pinch hit with their bench players.
UTA remains tied for first in the Sun Belt Conference heading into a three-game weekend series with Arkansas State University. Both the Mavericks and the Red Wolves currently own an 8-4 record in conference play.
“We leave Thursday, and we gotta take it to ‘em,” Childs said. “We’re battling for first place and this means a lot. Gotta take it to ‘em.”
UTA and Arkansas State kick off their series on 6:30 p.m. Friday at Tomlinson Stadium in Jonesboro, Arkansas.