The Bears boosted their current winning streak to four games on Wednesday with their victory over Texas State. It was a nice victory after a ten day break during the homestretch of the season, and the team should certainly thank their excellent pitching corps for it. Tyler Bremer (3 IP), Dillon Newman (3.2 IP), Crayton Bare (1 IP), Kolt Browder (.1 IP), and Max Garner (1 IP, 10th save) combined for the impressive five-hit shutout.
It was a good thing the pitchers were on their game, because the bats - except for Muncy who went 2-4, 2B, 2 RBI - showed quite a bit of rust. Nathan Orf, Josh Ludy, Logan Vick, Dan Evatt, Cal Towey, and Jake Miller all took 0-fers, and the team struck out ten times in the game while walking only once. That is not the kind of performance Bears' fans have grown accustomed to. The good news is that the offense has seven more games to find their groove again before the post-season begins, and they have, of course, two of the best starting pitchers in the conference rolling into the weekend series at Oklahoma. This past weekend, OU was all but eliminated from the NCAA Tournament picture when they lost their series with Oklahoma State, but don't expect them to roll over. A series win over the #2 team in the nation is just the kind of boost they need.
A final note about the Texas State game: Michael Howard, who was suspended earlier in the season, pinch hit in the game and appears ready to contribute again. I don't know how reliable the sources were, but I read earlier that it was a fairly simple matter of a freshman not attending class like he should. Coach Smith decided to send Howard a message with the suspension, and now, it should be resolved. This is not only good for the rest of this season, but also great for next season, as Howard will be a big contributor to any 2013 success the team has.