Tech Evens Series With Huskers, Wins Program's 200th Big 12 Game|
March 26, 2011
LUBBOCK, Texas - Texas Tech won its 200th all-time game in Big 12 action with a 10-8 victory over Nebraska on Saturday night in front of 3,382 fans at Dan Law Field.
Texas Tech's (16-8, 3-2 BIG 12) victory evens the three-game series after Nebraska (17-8, 1-1 BIG 12) took game one on Friday. A victory on Sunday would give Tech its first back-to-back series wins to open Big 12 action since 1999.
The Red Raiders jumped out to a 7-0 lead, but the Cornhuskers erased the seven-run deficit by scoring eight runs from the fourth to seventh inning while tying the score briefly at 8-8.
Junior shortstop Kelby Tomlinson scored the eventual game-winning run for the Red Raiders with a single through the left side with one out in the bottom of the seventh. Tomlinson went 2-for-3 while becoming the first Tech player this season with four RBI.
Relief pitcher John Neely struck out five consecutive batters to end the game - and finished with six strikeouts in 2.2 innings pitched - to earn his sixth win this season. He ended the eighth inning striking out Nebraska's leadoff batter and two-hole hitter. He then fanned the Huskers three-hole, cleanup and five-hole hitters. The three batters Neely stuck out to win the game in the ninth combined went 6-for-13 in the contest.
Neely is the fastest Tech pitcher to win six games since 2001, as the junior reached half a dozen wins in just 24 team games. In fact, Neely has earned the win in four consecutive Tech victories - which is something that hasn't happened in over 10 years at Texas Tech.
Tomlinson drove in three of Tech's seven runs in the first three innings as McGruder scored a pair of those runs and Barnes also scored in the first inning while extending his hitting streak to 11 games.
McGruder reached base in his first five plate appearances and finished 3-for-4 with three runs scored. Barnes went 2-for-5 and catcher Bo Altobelli went 2-for-3 with two runs scored as he notched a pair of infield base hits, including a bunt single in the second. Third baseman Reid Redman went 1-for-3 to improve his hit streak to 11 games.
Nebraska closer Casey Hauptman took the loss allowing two runs on four hits in 2.1 innings pitched with two strikeouts.
Texas Tech and Nebraska will play the deciding game in the three-game series on Sunday at Dan Law Field with first-pitch scheduled for 1 p.m.