Kilcrease Guides Tech To Series Clinching Win Over Nebraska
March 27, 2011
LUBBOCK, Texas - Junior left-handed pitcher Robbie Kilcrease dominated in a career-high 7.1 innings pitched while leading Texas Tech to a series-clinching victory over Nebraska with a 3-0 shutout at Dan Law Field on Sunday afternoon.
In the final Big 12 Conference meeting between these two programs, Tech (17-8, 4-2) earned its first-ever shutout over Nebraska (17-9, 1-2) in 52 all-time meetings. It also marked the first time Tech has won back-to-back series to begin conference play since 1999.
Kilcrease was the story as the lefty allowed only five hits and two walks with three strikeouts to improve to 3-0 on the season and to 8-1 in his career.
He allowed only two runners to reach scoring position after the first inning. He avoided an early scare as he ended the Huskers' first-inning scoring threat with a groundout to third baseman Reid Redman with the bases loaded to end the first inning.
Freshman David Paiz, who went 1-for-3 at the plate as the designated hitter, came in to pitch a perfect 1.2 innings to record his first career save. Texas Tech held Nebraska to only one hit following the third inning.
The Red Raiders were able to manufacture three runs on just four hits. Tech broke the scoreless tie with a run in the third inning as Bo Altobelli doubled to lead off the inning and then advanced to third base on the first of Mason Randolph's two sacrifice bunts on the afternoon. Redman scored Altobelli two pitches later with a sacrifice fly to left field.
It would end up being the only run Tech would need, but the Red Raiders pushed across an insurance run in the fourth inning on David Paiz' RBI double to right field and then in the fifth inning on Stephen Hagen's RBI groundout to first base.
Barrett Barnes was one of four Tech players with a base hit as he tallied an infield single in the fifth to keep his hitting streak alive at 12 games. Jamodrick McGruder went 1-for-2 and scored a run while reaching base in three of his four plate appearances with two walks - one coming intentionally.
Neither team recorded a base hit in the final three innings as the contest ended in only two hours and 33 minutes - Tech's shortest game (minutes) in a series finale since April 26, 2009 (vs. Missouri).
The Red Raiders will now prepare for their trip to Norman, Okla., next weekend to face the nationally-ranked Oklahoma Sooners in a three-game series at L. Dale Mitchell Park, April 1-3. The series begins at 6:30 p.m. on Friday while an ESPNU broadcast at 7 p.m. on Saturday will follow and a 1 p.m. first-pitch is scheduled for Sunday.