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Texas 11, BYU 1: Ty Madden flirts with a no-hitter as Texas wins its third straight

Zach Zubia has 20 home runs as a Longhorn, but Friday night's was his first inside-the-park homer.

On Friday night, Texas fans saw something they might have expected this baseball season. They also witnessed an unexpected highlight.

In leading his team to an 11-1 win over BYU at UFCU Disch-Falk Field, sophomore Ty Madden looked the part of a Friday ace. Madden took a no-hitter into the seventh inning for the Longhorns, who kept their momentum rolling on offense one day after a 12-6 beating of the Cougars.

Texas hadn't scored double-digit runs in consecutive games since the 2018 season. The most noteworthy of UT's seven hits on Friday? Zach Zubia's inside-the-park home run, UT's first such play in nearly six years.

With the win, the 19th-ranked Longhorns improved to 3-3. Texas has won three straight games.

"It's not about the 11-1; it's the way we did it," said Zubia, Texas' junior first baseman. "We did it with enthusiasm; we did it with aggressiveness; we did it with just a pedal-to-the-metal approach the whole game. I would say that we won almost every single pitch this game."

Against a BYU team that was hitting .228, Madden retired the first 10 batters he faced. The only Cougar who reached base in the first six innings was Mitch McIntyre, who was hit by a pitch in the fourth. 

Leading off the seventh, McIntyre squibbed a ball to Texas third baseman Cam Williams, who fielded it but didn't attempt to throw to first. That infield single kept Texas from recording its first no-hitter since Dillon Peters and Morgan Cooper shut down Kansas State's offense in 2014.

Madden said Williams was upset after McIntyre reached base. But the pitcher downplayed Williams' role in the lone hit he allowed. He also commended Williams for snagging a first-inning liner.

"I've got all the faith in Cam. It's just a cheap knock," Madden said. "After that, it's over and on to the next one."

Madden walked another batter during the seventh, but he also struck out three Cougars in his last appearance of the night. Befuddling BYU with his slider and a fastball that reached 98 mph, he finished an 87-pitch evening with a career-high 11 strikeouts.

Madden's best outing as a Longhorn came one week after he was the pitcher of record in an 8-3 loss to No. 7 Mississippi State. Over his four innings at Arlington's Globe Life Field, Madden allowed four hits and three earned runs.

"I felt like I let my team down last week, and that's not a feeling that I like," Madden said. "It's my job to go out there and give us the best chance to win every week."

On Friday, Texas scored the only runs it needed on one swing in the opening inning. With runners on second and third, Zubia smacked a sinking fly into center field. McIntyre was unable to make a diving catch, and the ball kept rolling to the wall.

Zubia was well on his way to third base by the time the Cougars had run down the ball. UT coach David Pierce waved Zubia home, and he scored easily.

"I was kind of in disbelief when (Pierce) started waving his arms around — I'm not going to lie to you," Zubia said. "It was a cool moment to be a part of."

The home run was the 20th of Zubia's career. The first 19 homers, though, all cleared a fence of some sort. Texas hadn't had an inside-the-park homer since Zane Gurwitz accomplished the feat against Texas State on March 24, 2015.

Zubia has never been one to boast about his speed. Two years ago, he joked with reporters that he was the only player in the Texas lineup who couldn't score from first base. Over his previous three seasons, Zubia's only stolen base had been a double steal with the speedy David Hamilton leading the charge.

"We can all go to our grave knowing that Zach Zubia can score on an inside-the-park," Pierce said. "It was worth watching, no matter what."

Around the bases: BYU got its second hit in the ninth inning. The Cougars avoided a shutout when Andrew Pintar scored on a wild pitch by Coy Cobb. ... UT designated hitter Ivan Melendez plated four runs on a pair of two-run singles. ... Texas stole three bases. ... Texas and BYU will close out their four-game series Saturday afternoon. Tristan Stevens (0-1, 5.06 ERA) will start for the Longhorns.