OMAHA, Neb. – Texas Tech’s historic season came to an end Friday afternoon as Michigan scored a run in each of the first four innings on its way to a 15-3 victory over the Red Raiders at TD Ameritrade Park.
Michigan (49-20) became the first team to plate a run in each of the first four innings since 2010 en route to advancing to the championship series where the Wolverines will meet either Vanderbilt or Louisville for a chance at a national title on Monday.
The Red Raiders (46-20) uncharacteristically struggled to find the strike zone throughout the afternoon, issuing 12 walks that marked Tech’s most ever in a NCAA Tournament game. The Wolverines took advantage, scoring 10 of their runs with two outs as part of its most productive day all-time in a College World Series game.
Michigan scored two runs in each of the first three innings, added one more on a wild pitch in the fourth and then broke the game open with a five-run sixth inning that was capped by a Jordan Nwogu two-run double to left center and a Jesse Franklin two-run single.
Tech answered the Wolverines early, plating three runs in the top half of the second to take a brief 3-2 lead behind a pair of one-out RBI singles from Dru Baker and Easton Murrell as well as a safety squeeze from Braxton Fulford.
The Red Raiders, who had the leadoff hitter reach base in six of nine innings, proceeded to leave two runners on to end the inning and five more over the next three frames, though, as Michigan starter Karl Kauffmann settled into a grove.
Kauffmann (12-6) earned his second win over Tech in as many weeks after surrendering the three runs off six hits and four walks over six complete innings. Jeff Criswell tossed three shutout innings to close out the win for his third save of the season.
Micah Dallas (7-2) took the loss for the Red Raiders as the freshman departed with no outs in the second following four runs off five hits and a walk. Tech went to its bullpen six times overall, fanning 11 Wolverines as a team as part of its eighth game with 10 or more strikeouts during the NCAA Tournament.
The loss ends a historic season for the Red Raiders, who won their third Big 12 regular-season title in the past four years advanced to Omaha for the fourth time in six seasons. Tech’s stay in Omaha featured two wins, placing the Red Raiders among the final four teams for the first time in program history.
By Ty Parker