Red Raiders Head to Troy Cox Classic

Feb. 13, 2014

Texas Tech Notes  |  Gameday Central  |  Texas Tech Stats

LUBBOCK, Texas - Texas Tech, fresh off a 3-2 start to its season, will travel to Las Cruces, N.M. this weekend to take part in the Troy Cox Classic hosted by New Mexico State. The Red Raiders will face Northern Colorado, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, Weber State and the host Aggies during the three-day event that begins with Tech and Northern Colorado at 10 a.m. CT Friday morning at the NMSU Softball Complex.

• Texas Tech started off its season with a 3-2 showing last weekend at the Lions Classic hosted by Southeastern Louisiana. The start matched Tech's opening weekend from a year ago when the Red Raiders took part in the Sportco Kick-Off Classic hosted by UNLV.
• The Red Raiders were originally scheduled for six games on opening weekend but their Thursday night opener against Southeastern Louisiana was cancelled due to cold and rainy conditions.
• Texas Tech started its season with a loss for the first time since 2008 following a 4-3 setback against Akron where the Red Raiders led early before surrendering a pair of runs in both the fourth and fifth innings.
• The Texas Tech pitching staff tossed two shutouts during the opening weekend of the season, marking the first time the Red Raiders have done so through the first five games since defeating Western New Mexico, 15-0, and New Mexico, 1-0, to start the 1998 season.
• The Red Raiders were the only Big 12 Conference team to toss multiple shutouts during the first weekend of the season.
• Texas Tech was the only Big 12 Conference program to have multiple pitchers record a perfect 0.00 earned-run average last weekend as Gretchen Aucoin and Brittany Talley did so in 16.2 combined innings between the two.
• The Red Raiders were among the most aggressive teams on the bases last weekend, finishing 10-for-13 in stolen bases which ranked second in the Big 12. It marked Texas Tech's most stolen bases through the first five games of a season since 2007 when the Red Raiders also swiped 10 bases during that span.

• Texas Tech will be returning to the Troy Cox Classic for the second-straight season after a 4-1 showing in the event a year ago where the Red Raiders defeated UMKC, Penn State and host New Mexico State. Tech's lone loss came in the tournament opener against Colorado State.
• Texas Tech ended the Troy Cox Classic with a 7-3 overall record a year ago, which marked its best record since winning the first 10 games of the 2011 season.
• Texas Tech is 20-16 all-time when traveling to Las Cruces, N.M. for tournament action. The 2013 trip marked Tech's first trip to New Mexico State since the 2002 season.
• The Red Raiders will once again close the tournament against host New Mexico State. Texas Tech is 8-5 all-time when facing the Aggies in Las Cruces.
Taylor Powell, Samantha Camello, Gretchen Aucoin and Sydnie Tapia all hit over .300 during last season's Troy Cox Classic with Powell leading the way with a team-best .615 average over five games where she was 8-for-13 with a home run and six RBI. Camello ended the weekend with a .455 average (5-for-11) while Aucoin and Tapia compiled .357 (5-for-14) and .333 (3-for-9) clips.
• In the circle, Brittany Talley was a perfect 2-0 with a 3.62 earned-run average in three appearances a year ago while Cara Custer failed to surrender an earned run all weekend while earning three no-decisions in each appearance. Aucoin also went 1-0 with a 1.75 ERA in her four innings of work.

• Texas Tech and Northern Colorado will be meeting for the second-straight year Friday morning and the fourth time in school history. The Red Raiders picked up an 8-7 come-from-behind victory over the Bears to improve to 3-1 all-time in the series. Tech is 2-1 against Northern Colorado when playing at a neutral site. The two teams will face each other again twice March 8-9 during the Tech's own Jeannine McHaney Memorial Classic.
• Texas Tech and Weber State will be meeting for the first time on a softball diamond Friday afternoon.
• The Red Raiders will renew their series with the Islanders for the first time since 2005 this weekend as Texas A&M-Corpus Christi is 6-5 all-time against Texas Tech with wins in each of the last five meetings. Tech is 1-4 against the Islanders when playing at a neutral site.
• Texas Tech and New Mexico State will continue their longstanding series on Sunday as the Red Raiders enter the first of two games this season against the Aggies with a 21-10 all-time advantage. Tech topped New Mexico State, 5-3, in eight innings a year ago to conclude the Troy Cox Classic. The victory marked Tech's eighth win in the last 10 meetings between the two schools who have met in all but five seasons since 1996. The Red Raiders, who are 8-5 all-time when facing the Aggies on the road, will host New Mexico State March 9 in the final game of the Jeannine McHaney Memorial Classic.

Texas Tech senior left-hander Brittany Talley was named the Big 12 Conference Pitcher of the Week this past Tuesday after her dominating performance at the Lions Classic. Talley powered Tech to its first win of the season with a two-hit, complete game shutout of Nicholls State on Friday night and then followed up by tossing 4.1 shutout innings two days later against Texas Southern. The Little Elm, Texas native was the only Big 12 pitcher with at least 10 innings pitched to not allow a single run, earned or unearned, last weekend. Talley also matched her career high with seven strikeouts against Nicholls State before finishing the weekend with 11 while holding opponents to just a .154 batting average.

Brittany Talley wasn't the only Red Raider with an impressive opening weekend. Gretchen Aucoin also tossed 5.1 shutout innings in three appearances, including the final 2.2 innings against Texas Southern where she picked up her first save of the season and the third already in her career. Aucoin, who entered with one on and one out in the fifth inning against the Lady Tigers, now ranks tied for sixth all-time at Texas Tech in saves after recording two during her 2013 freshman season. The Ocean Springs, Miss. native was the only Red Raider to appear three times in the circle over the first five games of the season.

Texas Tech's ability to steal bases was on full display during the Lions Classic as the Red Raiders swiped 10 alone over five games. Sydni Emanuel and Lea Hopson led Tech with four stolen bases each while Brittany Lee and Camaury Washington were both able to swipe a bag as well. Tech ended the weekend ranked second in the Big 12 in stolen bases, trailing only Texas which had 11 over its first five games. The Red Raiders had not previously stolen 10 bases over the first five games of a season since 2007 when Tech also totaled 10 stolen bases during that span.

Since Shanon Hays' arrival at Texas Tech in 2010, the Red Raiders have found success with junior college players, recruiting the likes of Logan Hall, Adriana Perez, Raven Richardson among others. Through five games this season, Tech's current class of junior college transfers have boosted the Red Raiders both offensively and defensively with Lea Hopson at second base, Kristi Belshe in left field and Kady Crow appearing behind the plate. Hopson, a College of Southern Idaho transfer, led all Red Raiders with a .429 average last weekend that included a pair of home runs, a double and three RBI. Belshe, meanwhile, got off to a fast start, going 2-for-3 in the season opener against Akron which included a home run a pair of RBI. She ended the weekend hitting .313 with a pair of doubles after transferring from Lake Land College in Illinois where she led all junior college players in hitting a year ago. Crow's impact was felt most defensively as she started behind the plate twice while driving in a RBI single for extra run support in Tech's 2-0 victory over Nicholls State. Belshe and Hopson arrived at Tech after earning NJCAA All-American honors in 2013.




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