An in-depth look into UT Arlington Baseball with Luke Brietzke, Sports Information Director.Looking back at UTA's 6-3 win over No. 19 Wichita State
2:58 p.m. Friday, March 4, 2011
- - - LUKE BRIETZKE
The 2011 UT Arlington does not have much power. It would be a mild surprise if the team hits 30 home runs this season.
There is not a great deal of speed on the team either. No player has more than one stolen base this season and no returning player reached double figures in the statistic last season.
For the Mavericks to be successful, then, they must have timely hitting - something the team found Thursday afternoon at Patriot Field.
More importantly, UTA needs to have production up-and-down the lineup.
That's what made the performances of shortstop Daniel Jordan and center fielder Philip Incaviglia so important. Jordan went 1-for-4 with a double, a run scored and an RBI. Incaviglia went 2-for-3 with two run-scoring singles and a stolen base.
For UTA's lineup to have success this year, there can't be any weak links. That means everyone - even the No. 8 and 9 hitters - need to produce for the Mavs. That the Mavs won the game when every starter had at least one hit is no surprise.
Another key to come out of Thursday's game is that Calan Pritchard found a way to compete without his command. A starter won't often get a win in a start when he walks five in 5.0 innings - especially against the No. 19 team in the country.
Yet Pritchard battled out of trouble, leaving several Shockers baserunners stranded. John Beck faced some of the same struggles. He rarely threw first-pitch strikes but fought through command issues as well to keep Wichita State at bay for the first 2.0 innings.
For a second consecutive outing, Brody Walker did an excellent job working out of a jam created by others. The redshirt freshman entered with runners on second and third and one out. He responded by getting the first hitter to ground out to short, enabling one run to score, and then striking out the next hitter to retire the side.
Adam Westbrook worked a scoreless ninth to end the game. He has catcher Chad Comer partially to thank after Comer picked Ken Hall off first - an unforgivable baserunning mistake in a three-run game.