Stanford knocks off Texas A&M, advances to the Super Regionals against Texas

By Jerry Briggs
For The JB Replay

Working on only two days rest, Quinn Matthews pitched four scoreless innings of relief, and the Stanford Cardinal clinched the title in the NCAA Stanford Regional Monday night, downing the Texas A&M Aggies 7-1.

Braden Montgomery and Malcolm Moore homered to lead the offensive attack.

Additionally, Moore and Saborn Campbell each enjoyed three-hit nights and scored twice for the Cardinal, who had been on the brink of elimination after a loss to A&M two days ago.

Since A&M’s 8-5 victory over Stanford Saturday, the Cardinal won three games in 48 hours.

First, they played an elimination game Sunday afternoon and downed Cal State Fullerton, 6-5. With the victory, they moved into the finals against A&M needing two wins to claim the regional title.

They took the first step in that process Sunday night, beating the Aggies, 13-5, to set up a winner-take-all game on their home field Monday night. The Cardinal won that one, too, using four pitchers to hold A&M to one run on seven hits.

Matthews (9-4) was the winner, allowing five hits but, nevertheless, working out of jams consistently while striking out five. The lefty threw 66 pitches on two days rest after throwing 114 pitches in a start last Friday against San Jose State.

San Antonio’s Nathan Dettmer (1-4) took the loss despite a strong effort in which he struck out eight in six innings. The righthander, a Johnson High School graduate, started and yielded four runs on six hits.

A&M scored its only run in top of the second on a solo home run from freshman Jace LaViollette. It was the 21st homer of the season from the 6-foot-6 outfielder from Katy Tompkins.

Stanford (42-17 on the season) went 4-1 in winning the regional title. The Cardinal is expected to host the best-of-three Super Regional this weekend against the Texas Longhorns (41-20).

The Longhorns advanced after going 3-0 to win the Coral Gables Regional in Florida.

NCAA regionals
How the Texas teams fared

Texas: (41-20) Beat host Miami for the title on Sunday in Coral Gables, Fla.
Texas Tech: (41-23) Lost to host Florida in the title game Monday in Gainesville, Fla.
TCU: (40-22) Defeated host Arkansas Monday to win the title in Fayetteville, Ark.
Texas A&M: (38-27) Lost to host Stanford in the regional title game at Stanford, Calif.
Dallas Baptist (47-16) Lost to Oral Roberts in the finals Sunday at Stillwater, Okla.
Sam Houston State: (39-25) Eliminated after three games at Baton Rouge, La.

Stanford wins 13-5 to deny Texas A&M an NCAA regional title

By Jerry Briggs
For The JB Replay

One win away from an NCAA Stanford Regional title, the Texas A&M Aggies started fast, hitting two homers and scoring four runs in the bottom of the first inning.

The Stanford Cardinal out-played them after that, storming to a 13-5 victory on Sunday night and forcing a deciding game on Monday for the regional title.

The winner will play the Texas Longhorns next week in the Super Regional round of the tournament.

Carter Graham kept Stanford in the game early by hitting two doubles that produced five RBIs. Later, Malcolm Moore hit a two-run homer and Tommy Troy hit a grand slam in a seven-run seventh inning for the Cardinal.

Meanwhile, the Stanford bullpen was solid, with relievers Brant Pancer, Braden Montgomery and Nick Dugan holding the Aggies to only one run in the final eight innings.

Dugan was particularly effective in pitching 3 and 2/3 scoreless while striking out six.

The Aggies were led early by Jace LaViolette and Ryan Targac. LaViolette slammed a three-run homer and Targac hit a solo shot to give A&M a 4-2 lead after the first inning.

Brett Minnich also hit a solo homer in the sixth that pulled A&M to within 6-5.

Haas-led Texas A&M rallies to beat Stanford, stays undefeated in NCAA regional play

By Jerry Briggs
For The JB Replay

Hunter Haas delivered with a two-run double in the sixth inning and a three-run double in the eighth in rallying the Texas A&M Aggies past the national No. 8-seeded Stanford Cardinal, 8-5, on Saturday night in the NCAA Stanford Regional.

Falling behind 4-1 in the early going, the Aggies scored one run in the fourth, two in the sixth, three in the eighth and one in the ninth to win going away on their opponents’ home field in California.

In the bottom of the ninth, the Cardinal made things interesting, scoring a run, forcing a pitching change and bringing the potential winning run to the plate in a bases-loaded situation. But A&M lefthander Troy Wansing shut down the threat, getting a fly ball to right field to end it.

With the win, A&M improved to 2-0 in the regional as they advance into the finals. On Sunday, Stanford will play Cal State Fullerton in an elimination game. The loser is out of the tournament, and the winner will advance to play a night game against the Aggies.

A&M needs to win only once to claim the regional title. Its opponent would need to win Sunday and Monday.

Stanford rallies in the ninth inning to end Texas State’s season

Texas State relief pitcher Tristan Stivors, a senior from Medina Valley High School, pitching against UTSA at Roadrunner Field on Tuesday, April 26, 2022. - photo by Joe Alexander

Tristan Stivors, Texas State’s All-American closer, started and pitched seven innings against Stanford. He gave up one run in a masterful performance, only to see his team let a late lead slip away. Here, he is shown pitching on April 26 at UTSA. – Photo by Joe Alexander

A record-breaking baseball season for the Texas State Bobcats came to a heartbreaking end Monday night in California. Leading by two runs going into the bottom of the ninth inning, the Bobcats couldn’t hold on.

The home-team Stanford Cardinal scored three runs in their last at-bat and escaped with a 4-3 victory to claim the championship of the NCAA tournament’s Stanford regional.

Stanford coach David Esquer called it a “miracle” finish. Texas State coach Steven Trout said he thought it was “an unreal” game.

“Last game of regionals, we pushed it to the brink,” Trout told reporters at the game site in Palo Alto, Calif. “Obviously thought we had it, going up 3-1. I mean, you got to tip your hat. They took some great swings in some big moments … That’s why they’re the No. 2 team in the country.

“Just couldn’t be more proud of my guys.”

With the victory, Stanford (45-15) advanced to the Super Regionals. The Cardinal, the No. 2 seed in the 64-team NCAA field, will host the Connecticut Huskies this weekend in a best-of-three series.

The Bobcats (47-14) likely will lament the lost opportunity for some time.

Texas State, frustrated with an inability to hit with runners on base for most of the evening, finally put it together in the top of the ninth.

They broke a tie and took a 3-1 lead when Wesley Faison ripped a two-run single off Stanford reliever Braden Montgomery.

Moving to the bottom of the ninth, they were three outs away from their first regional title and their first Super Regional, which would have been held on their home field in San Marcos.

But just as their vocal fans in attendance started to think about winning on the home field of one of the nation’s most storied programs, the lead slipped away. Stanford sophomore Drew Bowser opened the inning with a solo homer to left field.

Duly inspired, sophomore Tommy Troy followed with another solo blast, this one to deep center. Centerfielder Isaiah Ortega-Jones leaped for the ball, but couldn’t reach it. Just like that, the Cardinal had tied the game, 3-3.

At that point, Texas State pulled reliever Zeke Wood, who gave up both homers. Levi Wells entered to try and put out the fire, only to have Eddie Park greet him with a single — his fourth hit of the night.

Park moved to second base on a sacrifice bunt, which prompted Texas State to walk Brock Jones intentionally. With runners at first and second, a double play could have ended the inning. But it wasn’t to be.

As freshman Trevor Haskins entered the game as a pinch-hitter, Wells threw a wild pitch, allowing runners to move up to second and third. Wells appeared to hang a slider, and Haskins stroked it to left for a single, which scored Park with the winning run.

“A lot of respect for Texas State,” Stanford coach David Esquer said. “What a quality team. Obviously it went right down to the very end. They were unbelievably good and tough on us. We had to dig down deep for a miracle there at the end.”


Texas State 47-14
Stanford 45-15


Texas State finished with a school-record 47 victories and won the regular-season title in the Sun Belt Conference.

The Bobcats entered the NCAA tournament ranked second in the Stanford regional and opened Friday with a 7-3 victory over UC Santa Barbara. They followed Saturday night by matching up against the home team and claiming a 5-2 victory, which snapped a 17-game winning streak by the Cardinal.

Not only was it the first 2-0 start for the Bobcats in a regional, it put them in position to close out with the regional title on Sunday night.

Stanford didn’t let that happen. The Cardinal won an elimination game against UC Santa Barbara, 8-4, on Sunday afternoon. A few hours later, they took on Texas State for the second straight night and won — again by an 8-4 score.

In the winner-take-all game Monday, Trout flipped the script with his pitching. He elected to start All-American closer Tristan Stivors, who responded with a dazzling performance.

Stivors, a senior from San Antonio-area Medina Valley High School, toiled for seven innings and held the powerful Cardinal in check. In a 101-pitch drama, he gave up one run on eight hits. Stivors struck out nine and walked one.

Trout said he was looking for two or three innings from Stivors, who led the nation with 18 saves this year.

“For us, it was mainly, just get off to a good start, whatever that looked like,” Trout said. “You know, just kind of watch his stuff and how they reacted to it. He just kept pounding it in there. When we finally got out (to see him) in the seventh, he was losing a little bit (of his stuff), and I was going to pull him for the lefty, and he looked at me and said, ‘Don’t take me out.’ That’s just who he is.

“I hope the kid pitches in the big leagues, because he has the stuff, he has the guts to do it.”

While Stivors was making big pitches, a cadre of Cardinal pitchers were doing the same. Texas State finished the game with 10 hits but left 11 runners stranded. With runners on base, the Bobcats were 4 for 20. With runners in scoring position, they were 2 for 13.

Stanford used six pitchers on the night.

Joey Dixon started, followed by Max Meier, Drew Dowd, Ryan Bruno, Braden Montgomery and Brandt Pancer.

“I’m so proud of that pitching staff,” Esquer said. “Drew Dowd, who went as long as anybody, 2 and 1/3 (innings). From Dixon to Meier to Bruno, who pitched for the third day in a row. Montgomery, we pull (him) out of right field. What a lot to ask of him, to go two innings for the first time in a long time.

“No blame on what he did for us. And then Brandt Pancer obviously coming in, and getting that last out in the ninth. Just proud of this team.”

‘Batman’ powers Stanford past Texas State in NCAA baseball

Who was that masked man?

Why, it was Stanford University slugger Carter Graham, who celebrated each of his two home runs Sunday night by rounding the bases and then briefly donning a ‘Batman’ mask as he high-fived his way through teammates en route to the team dugout.

The reason for the invocation of the ‘Dark Knight’ into an NCAA tournament game against the Texas State Bobcats wasn’t entirely clear.

But as the game moved along, it became evident that the top-seeded Cardinal were not about to allow the Bobcats to play ‘The Joker’ and eliminate them from the playoffs. Not in an NCAA regional on their home field in Palo Alto, Calif.

Beaten by the second-seeded Bobcats on Saturday night, the Cardinal responded on Sunday by winning twice, once against UC Santa Barbara in the afternoon and then again against the Bobcats on Sunday night, both of them by scores of 8-4.

As a result, they ruined Texas State’s dream of a victory that would have clinched the school’s first title in a four-team NCAA baseball regional. Now, the same two teams will meet again Monday at Klein Field at Sunken Diamond in a winner-take-all for the championship.

The Bobcats raced off to a fast start, with Jose Gonzalez stroking a solo homer in the first inning for an early lead. It was Gonzalez’s third home run in the regional after hitting two in a 5-2 victory over the Cardinal on Saturday.

But Graham, not to be outdone, responded with a soaring two-run blast of his own in the bottom of the first for a 2-1 advantage. He added a three-run shot in the fourth inning, boosting the Cardinal into a 5-2 lead.

After the Bobcats scored single runs in the fifth and sixth to pull within one run, Drew Bowser hit a two-run homer in a three-run seventh, an uprising that seemed to take the starch out of the visitors from San Marcos, Texas.

Stanford’s offense was just too relentless to contain.

Not only did the Cardinal hit the ball over the fence three times, but they also sprayed line-drive singles to the outfield. They even scored on a squeeze bunt single by Adam Crampton that brought a runner in from third.

In all, the Cardinal produced 13 hits to only four for the Bobcats. Stanford pitchers Ty Uber (4-1), Brandt Pancer and Ryan Bruno combined for eight walks and seven strikeouts. Texas State starter Tony Robie (4-1) took the loss.

Robie pitched 4 and 1/3 innings and gave up five runs on eight hits. Offensively, the Bobcats were sparked by home runs from both Gonzalez and from San Antonio’s Dalton Shuffield, a senior from Johnson High School.


Texas State 47-13
Stanford 44-15

Coming up

Monday — Stanford regional title game between Texas State and Stanford, 9 p.m.


Texas State coach Steve Trout said: “You have to give credit to Stanford. They made some really big swings in big moments and did a good job with their arms as well. As I told the team, we are over it. This is the beauty of being in the winner’s bracket. You get to come back tomorrow and play one game to move onto the Super Regional.”

Texas State upsets Stanford and inches closer to an NCAA regional title

Another night, another milestone for the Texas State Bobcats’ baseball team. The Bobcats hit three home runs Saturday in a 5-2 NCAA tournament victory over Stanford, which snapped the Cardinal’s 17-game winning streak.

Jose Gonzalez ripped two homers and Wesley Faison added another as the Bobcats upended the top-seeded team on its home field in the Palo Alto regional.

More importantly, the second-seeded Bobcats improved to 2-0 in the tournament and moved to within one victory of the regional title.

On Sunday, third-seeded UC Santa Barbara and Stanford will play the first game of the day. It’s an elimination game, with the loser going home. The winner will meet the Bobcats on Sunday night. If the Bobcats win, they would claim their first regional crown.

If they lose, the same teams would play again on Monday to decide which team advances to the Super Regional round.

Levi Wells, a sophomore from La Porte, pitched seven innings and allowed two runs to earn the victory. Finishing on the back end was Tristan Stivors, from San Antonio area Medina Valley High School, who worked the last two innings for his national-best 18th save.

In the past few weeks, the Bobcats have strung together some impressive team accomplishments. They won the regular-season title in the Sun Belt Conference. They set a school record for victories in a season, which is now at 47.

On Friday, they hit two home runs and cruised to a 7-3 victory over UC Santa Barbara.

In beating Stanford on Saturday, the Bobcats may have topped everything. The Cardinal entered the NCAA tournament as the No. 2 overall seed in the 64-team field. Stanford hadn’t lost a game since May 1 at Washington, and yet the the Bobcats won and opened an NCAA tournament regional at 2-0 for the first time.

This is Texas State’s sixth trip to the NCAAs, and its first since 2011.


Texas State 47-12
Stanford 42-15

Coming up

Sunday — UC Santa Barbara vs. Stanford, 3 p.m. UC Santa Barbara-Stanford winner vs. Texas State, 9 p.m.

Monday — Championship game, if necessary, TBD.


Gonzalez stepped to the plate in the bottom of the first and blasted a solo home run, pulling it over the right field wall, for a 1-0 Texas State lead. After Stanford tied the game with a run in the second inning, the Bobcats retaliated in the fourth. First, Gonzalez led off with a solo shot to the opposite field in left. His blow made it 2-1 Texas State. Next, Justin Thompson doubled down the line. Faison, the next batter up, ripped a two-run shot to make it 4-1.


Asked jokingly by an ESPN commentator what he had to eat before the game, Gonzalez said he had rice and beans at a San Francisco restaurant. “I was pretty disappointed with myself yesterday,” he said. “I felt like I was trying to do too much a little bit. I just had to go back to .. what got me to this point now. Seeing the ball deep and being able to react and hit the pitches, you know.”

UTSA edges second-ranked Stanford, 6-5, in 10 innings

UTSA's baseball team upset No. 2-ranked Stanford 6-5 in 10-innings on Leyton Barry's walk-off hit at Roadrunner Field.

The UTSA Roadrunners mob Leyton Barry in the outfield after his game-winning hit in the bottom of the 10th inning. — Photo by Joe Alexander

The UTSA baseball game at Roadrunner Field on Monday seemingly had it all. Quality weather and sunshine, with temperatures in the 60s. An elite-level opponent, with the nation’s second-ranked Stanford Cardinal in the house. Even quality trash talk in a spirited performance by fans of the home team.

UTSA's baseball team upset No. 2-ranked Stanford 6-5 in 10-innings on Leyton Barry's walk-off hit at Roadrunner Field.

How sweet it is. Leyton Barry reacts to his jubilant teammates after stroking a 3-1 pitch from Tommy O’Rourke into center field for an RBI single, lifting UTSA over a team that reached the 2021 College World Series. — Photo by Joe Alexander

Sometimes, it seemed as if the talk generated heightened performance on the field. For instance, when the Roadrunners loaded the bases with nobody out in the fifth inning and Stanford reliever Max Meier threw three straight balls to UTSA’s Ian Bailey, the fans started a chant.

“One more ball,” they intoned. “One more ball.”

Meier wouldn’t have it. He reached back to find great stuff, and he struck out Bailey. The next batter, Leyton Barry, hit into a double play, ending a threat that could have expanded a two-run UTSA lead to four or five.

Instead, the Cardinal turned everything around. They tied the game with a monster two-run homer in the eighth, and their bullpen kept throwing strikes and frustrating the Roadrunners — until Barry came to bat in the bottom of the 10th inning, that is.

With runners at first and third and nobody out, Barry ripped a liner that dropped behind center fielder Brock Jones, allowing Shane Sirdashney to race home with the winning run in a 6-5 victory.

Just like that, the Roadrunners, who had let so many one-run games get away from them last year, beat a team that played in the 2021 College World Series. And they beat them by one run, with a key hit to back their own quality relief pitching.

“Good ball game,” Stanford coach David Esquer said. “I thought they played a great game. They did a good job. All their pitchers they brought in threw strikes and kept us off balance. That’s a good club. It looks like (an NCAA) regional team to me.”

How it happened

Sirdashney led an 11-hit attack with three hits and two RBI. UTSA (7-1) also got two-hit performances by Jonathan Tapia and Garrett Poston and a 2-RBI double from Chase Keng to down Stanford (6-2) and end the Cardinals’ five-game winning streak.

In the process, they extended their own streak to five.

As for the defense, well, the Roadrunners didn’t make an error, and their seven pitchers held an explosive Pac-12 team to six hits, the biggest blow coming in the eighth on the two-run homer by Carter Graham.

But in the end, it looked as if the Stanford bullpen, featuring lefty Ryan Bruno, who was throwing 95 mph fastballs that tailed away from right-handed hitters, might lock down the Roadrunners and allow the Cardinal to escape with the victory.

“I agree, their bullpen was fantastic,” said Barry, who was 1 for 6 with the winning hit. “But ours was, as well. That’s really the reason why we were able to win this game. Looking up at the scoreboard, Stanford only getting six hits against our pitchers, it’s what led us to the win.

“So you know, our bullpen was, frankly, better than theirs today. Which was fantastic for us.”

Last year, the Roadrunners boasted one of the most explosive offensive teams statistically in the nation and finished 22-26 because the pitching and sometimes the defense would falter. A lot of times it happened in the late innings.

On UTSA’s fifth game in four days, pitchers who carried the load included starter Ryan Beaird, plus Grant Miller, Drake Smith, Allen Smith, Daniel Shafer, Reece Easterling and John Chomko. Chomko pitched shutout ball in the ninth and tenth innings to earn the victory.

He didn’t allow a hit, walked only one and struck out four.

Touting a ‘new energy’

“We did have a lot of situations similar to this last year, that ended up going the other way,” Barry said. “We have a new team this year. But a lot of the guys are the same. For those of us who were here last year it feels fantastic to have a new energy in games like this.”

The victory was gratifying for UTSA coach Pat Hallmark. His Roadrunners won three games against top 25 teams last year. But, in beating a team ranked No. 2 in Monday morning’s Baseball America rankings, it was the best UTSA victory by opponent ranking since a 2012 game in which it defeated No. 1 Baylor at Wolff Stadium.

“It’s a good win, something to build on,” Hallmark said. “It’s a long season. But, I’m super happy for the players. More excited for them.”

Grateful for the opportunity

Hallmark said UTSA and Stanford made the deal to play at UTSA’s home field last October. Stanford, based in Palo Alto, Calif., had a three-game series scheduled for Feb. 25 through Feb. 27 in Round Rock.

“I knew one of their assistants, and he wanted to play before they flew out (to California),” Hallmark said, “and I said, ‘Heck yeah.’ We’d be more than happy to play. You tell me the time, and we’ll play.’

“So I’m grateful (to) them for wanting to play,” the coach added. “You know, this time of year, we need to play. People need to pitch, and we got about 13 hitters that I think deserve to play. It’s a challenging job, because they all deserve to play.

“Things are going great. Super happy for them.”


UTSA 7-1
Stanford 6-2

Coming up

Friday — Southern at UTSA, 6 p.m.
Saturday — Southern at UTSA, 2 p.m.
Sunday — Southern at UTSA, 1 p.m.

Correction: Stanford’s double play to end the bottom of the fifth went 4-6-3 in the scorebook.

UTSA baseball to host the fourth-ranked Stanford Cardinal

Kody Darcy. The UTSA baseball team playing Seattle in Game 2 on opening day Friday, Feb. 25, 2022, at Roadrunner Field. - photo by Joe Alexander

UTSA newcomer Kody Darcy has played in six of the team’s seven games and has produced a .400 batting average, a .480 on base percentage and a .600 slugging percentage. Darcy (shown here playing last Friday) had three hits in Sunday’s 13-0 victory over Seattle. – File photo by Joe Alexander

A big day in the history of the UTSA baseball program looms on Monday with the Roadrunners set to host the nationally-ranked Stanford Cardinal.

First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m. at Roadrunner Field.

The fourth-ranked Cardinal will be the highest-ranked team in any sport to play on UTSA’s campus in the modern era since 2006, according to the Roadrunners’ athletic department.

Both UTSA and Palo Alto, Calif.-based Stanford enter the game with 6-1 records. UTSA has won four in a row and Stanford five straight. Both teams have registered shutout victories in their last two outings.

Stanford won 39 games last year and advanced to the College World Series for the 17th time in program history. This season, the Brock Jones and Cody Huff-led Cardinal started the season by winning two of three at home against Cal State Fullerton.

Last week, the Pac-12 conference power played at home on Tuesday andf beat Santa Clara, winning 5-0. Traveling to Texas to play in the Karbach Round Rock Classic, the Cardinal defeated the Louisiana Ragin Cajuns 5-1 on Friday.

On Sunday, Stanford completed its stay in Central Texas by winning twice at Round Rock’s Dell Diamond, beating Indiana 13-0 and then downing second-ranked Arkansas 5-0.

During the Cardinal’s five-game winning streak, coach David Esquer’s pitching staff has yielded only two runs.

The Roadrunners, meanwhile, have also started fast under third-year coach Pat Hallmark.

They won two of three to open the season at Tarleton State and then swept four games in the last three days at home against the Seattle Redhawks.

After winning 7-3 and 3-2 on Friday, the Roadrunners rolled to an 11-0 victory on Saturday and then a 13-0 decision on Sunday.

On Saturday and Sunday, the Roadrunners’ pitching staff limited the Redhawks to a combined six hits.

Meanwhile, the offense feasted on Redhawks pitching Sunday for 20 hits, including three hits by Jonathan Tapia, Sammy Diaz, Leyton Barry and Kody Darcy.

Included in the outburst was a three-run home run by Tapia, a senior from O’Connor, his first of the season.


Stanford 6-1
UTSA 6-1

Coming up

Monday — Stanford at UTSA, 1 p.m.
Friday — Southern at UTSA, 6 p.m.
Saturday — Southern at UTSA, 2 p.m.
Sunday (March 6) — Southern at UTSA, 1 p.m.