“THE LONGEST GAME”

 

                                                                                               R  H  E
—————————————————————–
Texas Longhorns…… 020 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 1 –  3 20 3
BC Eagles………………  000 101 000 000 000 000 000 000 0 –  2  8  0
—————————————————————–                                    

 

Austin Wood

 On May 31, 2009, Pam and I were at the NCAA Regional Baseball tournament in Austin.  We set a personal record that day.  We arrived for the first game at 11 AM and then the second game a 6 PM.  The second game was between the Texas Longhorns and the Boston College Eagles and lasted until after 1 AM.  We were at the ballpark for over 14 hours.

Compared to the NCAA Baseball records set that day, ours was nothing.  Besides that, we enjoyed every minute of it.  The records set:

Longest game – 7 hours and 3 minutes – 25 innings.

Texas & Boston College combined to set NCAA records with 42 strikeouts, 222 total chances, 69 assists, 192 plate appearances and 171 at-bats.

Texas’ 91 at-bats, 103 plate appearances, 115 total chances and 75 putouts set new NCAA records.

Preston Clark’s 33 putouts set a new NCAA record for most single-game putouts.

Travis Tucker and Michael Torres set the NCAA single-game record for at-bats at 12 apiece.

The evening was highlighted by the relief performance of Austin Wood.  The Longhorns left-hander entered the game with one out and a runner on second base in the seventh inning and proceeded to pitch 12.1 innings before yielding a hit.  For the game, Wood pitched 13.0 scoreless innings, scattering two hits and four walks while striking out a career-high 14.  He logged 169 pitches on the evening, while throwing 122 strikes.

There were many heroes on both teams.  As you can see from the box score above, it was an evenly matched, very competitive game.  When Austin Wood was replaced on the mound in the 20th inning, the entire Boston College dugout came on the field and gave him a standing ovation.  Boston College had a runner on second base who remarked to the second baseman:  “Thank God he’s gone!”

 This was a game of “sportsmanship.”  That is my kind of game.  I witnessed great sportsmanship this weekend at the three-game series between Baylor and Texas.  Friday night at Waco there were about as many fans from Texas as Baylor.  Again and again, I witnessed Texas fans applauding great fielding plays by the Bears.  The same thing happened in Austin on Saturday and Sunday.  I think it is great when that kind of appreciation is expressed during the heat of the battle.  I have also attended games where fans spend more time harassing their opponents than rooting for their own team.  This kind of bad sportsmanship ruins the reason for the competition….in my opinion.  I had rather see each team give honor and appreciation for a game well played.

How can a team play over 7 hours and 16 extra innings at such a high level?  It takes leadership.  A leader steps up and is willing to do what is necessary for victory.  A leader brings the team together to play as one unit.  God is busy building a team to achieve the most important victory of all.  His desire is that none should perish.  This team must be strengthened by His Spirit in order to be victorious when the time comes for extra innings.  Each of us is a leader in some way.  We must go forward in boldness to achieve victory over the things of this world.  Each of us must be a team player and be willing to serve under our Leader.

 

 

 

 

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