Feb. 17, 2013
ARLINGTON, Texas – J.M. Twichell went 3-for-3 with three runs scored and an RBI to lead UT Arlington past Louisiana Tech 9-3 Sunday afternoon at Clay Gould Ballpark.
The Mavericks secured the season-opening sweep, improving to 3-0 for the first time since 2001. That team eventually made the NCAA Tournament.
Twichell finished a home run shy of the cycle. He singled in the second, belted a triple to right field in the third and connected for a double in the fifth.
“It all comes from my approach,” Twichell said. “I’m not trying to do too much. I felt like I was too passive the first two games, and I wanted to be more aggressive today and it paid off.”
Twice Twichell came up with an opportunity to complete the cycle. He walked the first time and got hit by a pitch on his last shot in the eighth.
Even with Twichell’s big day, the Mavericks’ lineup produced top to bottom on Sunday. Jake Pinchback went 4-for-5 with a run scored.
“This was a good weekend for us,” UT Arlington coach Darin Thomas said. “Twichell is going to be a middle of the order guy for us and he had a great day today. More importantly, we scored in every inning except the seventh. We’re going to have to be a bunting-, stealing-type of team. We did a good job of that this weekend.”
Brad Vochon worked 5 scoreless innings to earn the win in relief. Vochon (1-0) gave up two hits, walked three and struck out five Bulldogs. He struck out the side in the eighth and recorded an out in the ninth before Thomas relieved him after a one-out walk.
“Brad did a great job out of the bullpen,” Thomas said. “Really, that’s two strong outings we received in relief this week. Chad Nack came in Friday and he was outstanding.”
UT Arlington scored runs in five consecutive innings, starting with five runs in the second and third frames. Twichell provided the big hit when he slammed a two-out triple to the right-field wall to score Ryan Walker.
Louisiana Tech (0-3) took a 1-0 lead in the second when Bre’Shon Kimbell belted a double into the left-field corner to score Jacob Derouen, who led off the frame with a single.
The Bulldogs could have done more damage, but UTA starter Keegan Hucul settled down to escape from a two-on, no-out situation with a little help from a base-running error. With one out and a runner on third, Tyler Qualls hit a low line drive to left. Kimbell tried to tag up, but left early and enabled the Mavericks to successfully appeal and secured the threat-ending double play.
The Mavericks opened their scoring barrage in the home half of the inning and never trailed after that.
UT Arlington faces a major test to its undefeated start Tuesday when it travels to Austin to take on Texas. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m.