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Huskies Shut Out UTRGV for Third Straight Win

Feb 28, 2021

SEATTLE -- The Washington baseball team (3-3) found success in every facet of the game on Sunday night, as it cruised to a 6-0 victory over the Texas Rio Grande Valley Vaqueros (2-4). Jack Enger was dominant on the mound and was aided by Braiden Ward's base running and a couple of big home runs that helped the Huskies take their third straight game against the Vaqueros.

As is often the case with Braiden Ward, if you blink, you'll probably miss him. The very first pitch of the first inning hit him in the foot. On the first pitch to the next batter, he stole second base and went to third when the throw got away from the shortstop. Just a couple pitches later, he sprinted home on a passed ball. 

"He can change the whole complexion of the game when he gets on," head coach Lindsay Meggs said. "He puts so much pressure on the pitcher. It's not just that he's electric in terms of his speed, but he runs the bases hard. He pushes and pushes and pushes and that can change the game."

Two batters later, true freshman Michael Brown got a hold of a pitch and sent it over the right field wall for his first career home run and the first at Husky Ballpark this season. 

In the bottom of the third, Kaiser Weiss led off with a double into the left field corner. After a Braiden Ward bunt single to move him to third, Christian Jones lifted a sac fly to center field to make it a 3-0 game. 

While one home run was impressive enough given the temperature and wind at Husky Ballpark on Sunday night, Will Simpson decided to add another in the fourth inning. He crushed a no-doubter over the scoreboard in left field, which gave UW a 4-0 lead.

"To hit one out of here today to right field, into the teeth of that wind, that's a man-sized home run," Meggs said. "Will's was no less."

While the Husky offense was putting runs on the board, Jack Enger was keeping UTRGV off the board. Enger was masterful in five scoreless innings, as he struck out five, allowed just two hits and walked none. 

A Jones RBI single in the fifth and Weiss sac fly in the eighth provided more insurance, which was plenty for the dominant Husky pitching staff.

Stu Flesland III took over to start the sixth and would go on to fire 2.1 scoreless frames. He exited with one out in the eighth inning and David Rhodes came in to finish the job. Rhodes got the last five outs to secure the victory and help UW become one win away from a four-game sweep. 
Husky Notes

  • Braiden Ward has now reached base 10 out of the 16 times he has lead off an inning (62.5%).
  • Ward and Christian Jones have hits in all six games this season, while Noah Hsue and Will Simpson have reached base in all six.
  • Michael Brown hit his first career home run.
  • Nick Kresnak recorded the first hit of his career in his first Husky at-bat in the eighth inning.
  • The Washington bullpen has thrown 11 consecutive scoreless innings, dating back to the first game of the series against UTRGV.

The Huskies and Vaqueros meet for the final time on Monday afternoon at 1 p.m.. Washington will be going for the four-game sweep.