By Ty Parker
LUBBOCK, Texas – No. 10 Texas Tech baseball climbed out of a 9-0 hole behind seven runs in the fourth and nine more in the sixth to earn a split of the midweek series with UTRGV in a 19-11 route Wednesday afternoon at Rip Griffin Park.
The Red Raiders (30-14, 11-7) compiled a season-high 20 hits and got home runs from Josh Jung, Cameron Warren and Kurt Wilson in the win. The comeback was Tech’s largest since overcoming a 9-0 deficit in a 13-11 win at Dallas Baptist on April 14, 2010.
Sophomore Gabe Holt came a home run short of the cycle, going 4-for-6 with a triple, a double, five RBI and four runs scored. His four hits set a career high and matched the most by a Red Raider this season. The four runs matched his career high and Tech’s season high, while the five RBI were his most this year.
Sophomore right-handed pitcher Kurt Wilson made his first start of the season in left field and seized the opportunity, going 3-for-5 with a home run, a double, three RBI and three runs. His single in the fourth was his first hit of the season and the home run was the second of his career. Wilson entered the game with only one plate appearance on the year after starting 11 games in the outfield in 2018.
As a team, Tech finished with nine extra-base hits in the contest while nine different players recorded hits. Five different Red Raiders crossed home multiple times and five recorded multi-RBI games.
The Vaqueros (29-15, 14-4) scored nine runs in the second inning to take a 9-0 lead. Only two of the runs were earned, however, as Tech was plagued by four errors in the frame. Tech starter Erikson Lanning gave up four hits and struck out two in his brief start.
Tech began to chip away at the lead with two runs in the third. Holt led off with a single and scored on a double from Klein. Jung, who went 3-for-4 with two RBI and three runs, later connected on a solo home run to make it a 9-2 game.
The Red Raiders tied it an inning later with a seven-run fourth. Wilson and sophomore third baseman Parker Kelly started the inning with back-to-back hits. Holt tripled to bring in two and then scored on a single from sophomore Dylan Neuse to make it 9-5. Neuse stole second and then scored on a single from Jung. Sophomore Cody Masters drove in Jung with an RBI single, and Wilson capped off the frame with an RBI double to left center.
Tech took the lead with a run in the fifth. Holt recorded a one-out double and moved to third on a Neuse dingle. Klein then lifted a fly ball to left deep enough to score Holt. For Klein, it marked his seventh sacrifice fly of the year which puts him in a tie for fifth nationally.
No. 10 Texas Tech fired off nine more runs in the sixth to take a commanding 19-9 lead. Holt drove in three with a bases-loaded double, Warren hit a three-run blast two left and Wilson sent a two-run shot of his own to left.
The Red Raider bullpen was able to stabilize the game from the third inning on as UTRGV managed just two runs on six hits for the remainder of the contest. Freshman Trey Garlett (1-0) picked up his first career win, tossing two scoreless frames leading into the sixth.
Junior Dane Haveman struck out three and scattered three hits to take Tech into the eighth, where the Vaqueros were able to score two runs off junior Caleb Freeman before redshirt freshman Clayton Better closed it out in the ninth.
The Red Raiders continue Big 12 play this weekend as they travel to Norman to face Oklahoma (30-15, 8-7) for its final Big 12 road series of the season.