Texas Tech Uses Speed, Pitching to Down Sam Houston State|
March 1, 2014
LUBBOCK, Texas - Texas Tech plated three runs over the first two innings Saturday evening before Cara Custer closed the door on a 4-2 victory over Sam Houston State at Rocky Johnson Field.
The victory was Tech's second of the day and third straight after routing Rhode Island, 12-1, in five innings, improving the Red Raiders to 13-6 overall and 3-1 in the Texas Tech Invitational.
"I was glad we got a couple wins today," Tech head coach Shanon Hays said. "Sam Houston always has a good club, so to beat them was obviously something I was thrilled to see. We hit the ball better today, especially in the first game, and we really had good pitching. Our pitching has really been our key factor this weekend."
Custer (5-3) picked up the win, her second of the weekend, after tossing 4.1 innings of relief where she allowed just one run off two hits while striking out two. She came on for Brittany Talley, who tossed the first 2.2 innings where Sam Houston (7-8) scored one run off five hits.
Talley made the start in both games Saturday for the Red Raiders as she combined for 6.1 innings and just one earned run off six hits. Her win against Rhode Island marked the 40th in her illustrious career at Tech.
The southpaw received some early run support from the Red Raiders as Tech got on the board in the first off a Kierra Miles RBI fielder's choice to first base that scored pinch runner Camaury Washington just under the tag at the plate.
Washington set the RBI up moments before with her second stolen base of the year as she swiped third on a double steal attempt with Cassie McClure. It was one of four stolen bases for Tech which was its most since swiping seven against Manhattan on March 17, 2012.
McClure drove in one of two runs for Tech in the second as she lined a bases-loaded single to the right of shortstop Tayler Gray. The hard-hit ball was snagged on a dive by Gray but not in time to catch Samantha Camello scoring at the plate or to get McClure out at first.
Camello opened the inning with a leadoff triple down the right field line that was her first of the season and the second of her career. Tech added another run in the second off a Sam Houston fielding error and then one in the fourth from Kierra Miles' RBI ground out to Gray.
Despite the three runs over the first two innings, the Red Raiders had a chance to break the game open early but Tech stranded the bases loaded in each of the first two frames en route to leaving nine on in the game.
Haley Baros (3-3), one day after recording a save against the Red Raiders, took the loss in a complete-game effort where she allowed four runs, three of which were earned, off nine hits while striking out two.
Both of Sam Houston's runs came off the bat of Gray as she laid down a successful squeeze bunt in the third and then connected on a two-out solo home run in the fifth inning. The Bearkats put two runners on in the seventh inning but stranded both as part of seven runners left on in the game.
Due to projected weather forecasts in the Lubbock area, Tech's tournament finale against Abilene Christian has been cancelled. The opening game between Rhode Island and Sam Houston State has also been cancelled as well.