LUBBOCK, Texas – The No. 3 Texas Tech baseball team picked up a 4-2 victory over Maine on Friday afternoon at Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park.
The Red Raiders (1-0) used a three-run third inning to help secure a season-opening win over the Black Bears (0-1). The victory improved Tech to 6-1 under head coach Tim Tadlock on Opening Day, winning 19 of the last 20 season openers. Overall since 1985, the Red Raiders are 31-2 in home openers.
Sophomore infielder Josh Jung recorded a three-hit afternoon against the Black Bears, coming a triple shy of the cycle. He had a double in the first inning, a single in the third & a homer in the fifth. Needing a triple in his fourth at-bat of the day, he was hit-by-a-pitch.
For the second-straight year, junior right-handed pitcher Davis Martin was tabbed as the club's Opening Day Starter. Just like last season, he picked up the win after going 5.0 frames of three-hit ball, giving up just one run, while walking two and striking out four. His second strikeout of the day put him at 100 in his Texas Tech career, making him the second pitcher on the roster to hit the century mark while in a scarlet & black uniform.
After a pair of scoreless frames, the Red Raiders drew first blood with three runs on four hits in the bottom of the third inning. Sophomore designated hitter John McMillon opened the frame by getting hit by the third pitch he saw, then was quickly moved over to third by a double roped to right field by freshman infielder Gabe Holt. With the duo on second & third, junior outfielder Farhat shot a single through a hole on the left side of the infield to clear the bases and give Tech a 2-0 lead. Shortly after, sophomore outfielder Grant Little lifted a double that was barely held in the park by the top of the right field wall, allowing Farhat to easily scamper home for the 3-0 advantage.
The Black Bears cut into the lead in the top of the fifth thanks to an RBI groundout from Pena. Maine began the inning with a single from Vicens & a walk from Ridley, then both were moved over by a sacrifice bunt from Kerbs. The grounder to second base pushed the Black Bears within two at 3-1.
Tech got the run back in the bottom half of the inning, as Jung launched a solo homer over the Tech bullpen in right field to make it 4-1.
The Red Raiders ran into a little bit of trouble in the top of the eighth, as the Black Bears loaded the bases with nobody out. A line drive that was batted down by senior infielder Michael Davis traded an out for a run to cut the lead to 4-2. However, a fly out and a strikeout from junior RHP Ryan Shetter helped keep the damage to one run.
In the ninth, sophomore lefty Dane Haveman shut the door and picked up his first save in a Texas Tech uniform after a strikeout and inducing a game-ending double play to give Tech the win.
The Red Raiders return to action on Saturday for a doubleheader against the Black Bears at noon & 4 p.m. at Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park.