Baseball starts season off swinging


Jonathan Tapia swings at a pitch in a game. UTSA was about to kickoff conference play against the Charlotte 49ers when the outbreak of COVID-19 halted all sports in the United States and around the world Photo by Jack Myer.

Ryder Martin, Staff Writer

UTSA baseball opened a new era and their season playing first against the Bobcats of Quinnipiac University. The Roadrunners swept the three-game series, giving new head coach Pat Hallmark a sterling start. Dominant pitching was the story of the series as the ‘Runners’ pitchers allowed only eight hits and two earned runs. Offensively, Dylan Rock and Hobbs Price were major standouts. Rock hit .455 for the series with two runs batted in and four stolen bases. Price began his career at UTSA in excellent fashion, batting .444 during the series and connecting on his first career hit for a homerun to deep center field on Feb. 15.

Slater Foust got the nod as starting pitcher on opening day for the ‘Runners. Foust delivered a dominant outing, throwing 6.2 innings and allowing one hit, three walks and recording six strikeouts. Cole McKay and Palmer Wenzel came on to record the last seven outs of the game. With the offense leaving eight runners stranded in scoring position, the efforts of the pitchers were crucial in securing the 2-0 victory.

Saturday, Feb. 15 saw a 5-1 victory for the ‘Runners. Shane Daughety shook off an early homerun in the second inning to produce a career-best outing for the ‘Runners. In a career long outing of 7.1 innings of work, he allowed three hits, one run, one walk and notched a career-best seven strikeouts for the day.

“He put them a little bit on their heels because of all of the strikes and all of the velocity on the ball, and he had a pretty good curveball today,” Hallmark praised.

UTSA got the series sweep on Sunday with a 13-3 rout. Hunter Price demonstrated his value for the ‘Runners, picking up the win on the mound after starting the first two games in the field. The ‘Runners jumped to an early lead in the first inning behind two runs batted in single from Price that set the tone for the rest of the game. The ‘Runners notched 13 hits as the offense shook off their earlier struggles in the series to hang double digits on the board.

The ‘Runners will face the University of Texas at Austin Longhorns (3-0) at their home opener in Austin on Feb. 18 at 6:30 p.m. After their game against the Longhorns, the ‘Runners will compete in the Irish Alamo Classic from Feb. 20 to Feb. 23. UTSA begins play with games against the University of Toledo Rockets (1-2) on Feb. 20 and Feb. 21 before facing the University of Notre Dame Fighting Irish (2-1) on Feb. 22. UTSA will finish the classic on Feb. 23 with a game against Hallmark’s former team, the University of the Incarnate Word Cardinals (3-0), for the first time since Hallmark joined the ‘Runners. All games for the Irish Alamo Classic will be played at Nelson W. Wolff Municipal Stadium.