Red Raiders Falter In Big 12 Championships Opener

Ben Flora logged a career-high 5 1/3 innings and six strikeouts in a 9-2 loss to Texas A&M.

Ben Flora logged a career-high 5 1/3 innings and six strikeouts in a 9-2 loss to Texas A&M.

May 26, 2010

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OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. - Texas A&M's Michael Wacha had a no-hitter through five innings and ended up holding Texas Tech to just two runs on two hits over seven innings to guide the Aggies to a 9-2 win in the first game of the 2010 Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship at AT&T Bricktown Ballpark.

The loss gives the Red Raiders a five-game losing skid as Tech drops under .500 at 27-28. Texas A&M improves to 37-19-1 and has won three in a row.

"We need to do a better job offensively early in the game," said Texas Tech head coach Dan Spencer. "Not to take anything away from Micahel Wacha. He did a good job but we need to put a little pressure on them. We had a chance, if we can get on base, to run the bases against Wacha a little bit. That is not his strength yet, holding runners, but we couldn't get on base. We didn't have a runner until the sixth."

After the Aggies staked a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first, they rode the right arm of Wacha over the next six frames. Wacha had a no-hitter brewing through 5 1/3 innings before Tech senior right fielder Bonham Hough broke it up with a solo home run to left field. The home run was his sixth of the season and cut the Texas A&M lead to 3-1.

With one outs and a runner at second in the sixth, Texas Tech head coach Dan Spencer was forced to pull starter Ben Flora in favor of freshman right-hander Brandon Petite. Petite walked the first batter he faced to put two Aggie runners on base before striking out Kevin Gonzalez for the second out of the frame. Texas A&M third baseman Caleb Shofner then gave the Aggies a 5-2 lead with a two-run single that just barely went over the head of Tech second baseman Jamodrick McGruder into right field.

Back-to-back home runs in the seventh inning by Matt Juengel and Adam Smith put the game out of reach for the Aggies as they staked a 9-2 lead.

Flora was tagged with the loss for Texas Tech despite turning in the best outing of his two-year career. Flora held the Aggies to four runs (three earned) on six hits and set new career highs in strikeouts (6) and innings pitched (5 1/3).

Texas Tech will look to snap its five-game losing skid on Thursday afternoon when the Red Raiders battled top-ranked Texas at 3 p.m.




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