AUSTIN, Texas -- Texas is headed back to the College World Series
for the third time in three years.
The top-seeded Longhorns beat Vanderbilt 10-2 in Saturday's NCAA
Super Regional, clinching the best of three games series 2-0.
After defeating Vanderbilt 15-3 in Friday's opener, the
Longhorns (55-13) again scored in double digits.
Curtis Thigpen hit a home run that bounced off the left field
scoreboard to put the Longhorns up 1-0 in the top of the first.
Thigpen went 3-for-4 with 3 RBI.
Texas came into the Super Regional with a team batting average
In the top of the fifth, Drew Stubbs hit a two-run home run to
give the Longhorns a 4-0 lead.
Texas coach Augie Garrido said he wasn't surprised by the 25
runs in two games.
"We have power," Garrido said. "We played the best baseball
of our season in these two games."
Vanderbilt (45-19) responded in the bottom of the fifth when
Scott Worth tripled to score Tony Mansolino. Worth scored
Vanderbilt's only other run later in the inning on a fielder's
Texas -- which will be making its 31st appearance in the College
World Series -- added a run in the top of the seventh and four more
in the top of the eighth.
"If you look at what happened today on the offensive side,
there wasn't a whole lot of difference to the consistency and the
approach that the players took in every inning," Garrido said.
"That is pretty awesome. It can be easily overlooked and hard to
Sam LeCure (9-3) threw five strikeouts and gave up two runs in 5
and one-third innings to earn the win.
Ryan Mullins (9-2) got the loss for Vanderbilt, allowing eight
hits and four runs in five innings.
Texas advances to the national championship competition
involving eight teams that starts Friday in Omaha, Neb.
"I have to say, from power to defense to offense to
athleticism, (Texas) knows how to play the game," Vanderbilt coach
Tim Corbin said. "They're as good of a team as we've faced. I'd
put my money on them."
The Longhorns took the conference title despite a letdown at the
end of the regular season when they lost three of their last five
They were also knocked out of the Big 12 tournament by eventual
tournament champion Oklahoma State. Garrido said those struggles
helped the team prepare for tougher tests.
"We did get in that funk," he said. "All teams do that and
that is part of what makes you a better team. You do experience
adversity. You realize how important it is to do what we did in
these two games."