Feb. 25, 2012
Matthew Reckling had a sensational day on the mound at Reckling Park, scattering two hits and three walks over a career-long 8.1 innings with a career-best 11 strikeouts as the No. 4 ranked Owls slipped past Dallas Baptist 2-0 Saturday afternoon.
Reckling is a local standout with deep Rice roots. His grandfather, T.R. Reckling, was a Rice baseball letterman in the 1950s whose name is on the stadium where the Owls call home. Where young Reckling's outing could be described as a magical day for the whole family, Rice head coach Wayne Graham described his starter's array of pitches providing most of the hocus pocus.
"Reckling was throwing a disappearing curveball," said Rice head coach Wayne Graham. "It would get to the dirt and just disappear. He had a mix (of pitches) today. He had a change-up, and he used it more than he's ever used it. He was a three-pitch pitcher today."
With the victory the Owls remained undefeated on the young season at 7-0, the program's best start since an 8-0 ledger to begin 2001. The Blue & Gray also clinched the weekend series over DBU, an NCAA Super Regional participant last season. Like the narrow 6-5 win on Friday night, the Owls had to battle all the way to the end on Saturday.
Reckling was up to the challenge. The former Kinkaid star dazzled the Patriot hitters into the ninth inning and at one point had retired 12-of-13 with eight strikeouts. He issued a walk in the second, but the runner was erased on a round-the-horn double play. The first base hit he allowed in the top of the third was caught stealing to end the inning. Another walk in the fifth and a hit batter an inning later were both left stranded by inning-ending strikeouts.
"It felt good today," Reckling said. "(Starting catcher) Craig (Manuel) and I were working together really well. That was big. I thought I changed speeds pretty well and threw my fastball, curve and change-up for strikes. If you can do that you can keep the hitter off-balance. I knew I could trust the defense. All I had to do was pound the strike zone and be aggressive."
The Owl hitters quickly gave Reckling a supporting run early in the contest. Christian Stringer started the bottom of the first with a double to right-center and Michael Fuda drove him home from third base with a double to right field. It would prove to be all the offense Rice would need, but junior Michael Ratterree led off the bottom of the fourth with solo home run near the left field pole.
Reckling started the ninth with his career-high 11th strikeout, but Dallas Baptist's Austin Elkins punched a base hit through the right side and Landon Anderson drew a walk to bring the go-ahead run to the plate. With the game on the line in the ninth for the second time in as many games, Rice head coach Wayne Graham brought in junior closer J.T. Chargois out of the bullpen.
Chargois struck the first batter out on three pitches before an easy ground ball to Stringer quickly ended the threat. The save was Chargois' third of the season and second in less than 24 hours.
"That's his job," Reckling said. "He's got some of the best stuff in the country. We're very confident handing the ball over to him."
The weekend series, and the team's season-opening eight-game homestand at Reckling Park, concludes Sunday at 1 pm.
Baseball Tabbed as Preseason Favorite In C-USA ...
01/27/2016 - With two preseason all-conference players, including Blake Fox as the 2016 Preseason Pitcher of the Year, the Rice baseball team was picked to...
Being Good Neighbors
01/27/2016 - With the team’s first practice of the season just three days away, the Owls on the Rice baseball team spent Tuesday afternoon making some new...
Baseball Season Tickets Now On Sale
12/01/2015 - Season tickets for the 2016 edition of Rice Owls Baseball are now on sale on-line through the Athletics Ticket Office.
Baseball Announces Latest Signing Class
11/24/2015 - The Rice baseball program has signed ten new standouts in the early period who will join the team for the 2017 season, head coach Wayne Graham...
Great Day On The Golf Links at 2015 Longball...
11/02/2015 - Rice baseball alumni, Owl fans and family all had a great time at the program's annual Longball Classic Golf Tournament played on Monday, Nov. 2....
Owls Conclude Fall Exhibition Game
10/17/2015 - Lamar claimed Saturday’s 14-inning fall exhibition over the Rice baseball team by a final score of 16-4. The team’s fall training...
Rice Baseball To Host Fall Exhibition Saturday
10/13/2015 - The Rice baseball team hosts longtime rival Lamar in an exhibition on Saturday (Oct. 17) at Reckling Park. Start time is set for 1 pm. There is no ...
Dates Set For Winter Baseball Camps
10/12/2015 - The dates for the 2015 Rice Owls Winter Baseball Camps are set. Beat the rush and sign youths up early to get the jump on next season.
- Top Videos /
- Online Store