LUBBOCK, Texas — Texas Tech limited Utah Valley to just three hits Wednesday night as the Red Raiders (12-7) took the two-game midweek series at Rip Griffen Park with a 6-0 victory over the Wolverines (7-10).
"Our pitchers gave us a chance to stay in the game," Wolverine head coach Eric Madsen said. "Hopefully our hitters can respond and make some approaches in the next game."
Utah Valley starter Devin Nelson and Texas Tech starter Corey Taylor matched one another pitch-for-pitch in the early stages of the ballgame, as neither allowed a base runner until the third.
With one out in the third, Willie Pratt reached via a walk and Jordy Hart followed with a single. The two advanced into scoring position but couldn't score as Taylor managed to pitch out of the jam by striking out Stone Ramsey and inducing an inning-ending groundout from Riley White to end the threat.
The Red Raiders then got to Nelson in the bottom of the third as they managed to push two runs across on three hits. Texas Tech then added another run in the fourth to take a 3-0 lead.
The game remained 3-0 until the eighth when Tech pushed across three late insurance runs to pull ahead at 6-0.
Taylor shined on the mound for Texas Tech as he allowed just one hit and one walk in seven innings of work. The Tech starter faced the minimum in six of his seven innings as he struck out 12 hitters.
UVU looked to get things going offensively in both the eighth and ninth as it had runners on in each frame, but the Red Raider defense answered with double plays both times. TTU's Taylor improved to 2-2 on the year, while UVU's Nelson dropped to 1-1 after being tagged with the loss. Nelson gave up just three runs on five hits while striking out seven in his five innings of work. Wolverine reliever Jeff Barto also pitched well in the contest by pitching two solid innings of scoreless relief. Barto struck out three batters and gave up one hit in two innings of work.
Hart, Kai Hatch and White led Utah Valley offensively as they tallied a hit apiece. Texas Tech catcher Mason Randolph led the Red Raiders by going a perfect 4-for-4 with two RBIs and a run scored.
The Wolverines will now trek to the Bay Area to play a three-game set (Friday-Sunday) at Saint Mary's in Moraga, Calif. Game one of the series will begin Friday at 4 p.m. MT.
James Warnick is an assistant sports information director at Utah Valley University. For more information about Wolverine athletics, visit www.WolverineGreen.com.