COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The Texas Tech softball team kept its opening day streak alive winning its fourth straight season opener with a 3-1 victory over Colorado State. The extra inning victory was the first win of the Sami Ward era.
The Red Raiders then fell in game two of the day, 6-1 to Central Arkansas.
Texas Tech 3, Colorado State 1 (9 inn.)
After a quiet first inning that saw each team get one hit, the Red Raiders came out swinging in the top of the second. Zoe Jones singled to right and Arriana Villa tallied her first collegiate hit, a double to left field to put runners on second and third with no outs. With two outs and two runners in scoring position Riley Love connected with her first career RBI, a single through the left side of the field scoring Jones. Villa was thrown out at home to end the inning. The Rams followed with a run of their own in the bottom of the second on a two-out single down the left field line past a diving Love.
Colorado State threated in the bottom of the fifth after a pair of Rams reached base on back-to-back singles. A fly out to Heaven Burton in left and a line out to Love at short ended the scoring threat with no damage done.
With the score still knotted at 1-1 in the bottom of the seventh, Colorado State put two runners on after a single and a hit by pitch. Missy Zoch entered the game for Erin Edmoundson and retired the next two batters to send the game into extra innings.
The Red Raiders were retired in order in the top of the eighth and faced pressure once again from the Rams lineup with two base runners on and no outs. A slow roller to second loaded the bases with two outs, but Zoch came up with a big strikeout to get the Red Raiders out of the inning.
Texas Tech’s bats came alive in the top of the ninth with Jacee Hamlin on second to start the inning as part of international tie break rules. Karli Hamilton tripled to right center field to score Hamlin and put the Red Raiders ahead 2-1. Another Texas Tech run scored on a single to left from Breanna Russell.
The Rams advanced a runner to third on a groundout in the bottom of the ninth but were unable to push a run across as the Red Raiders tallied their first win of the season, 3-1.
Zoch picked up the win in the circle allowing just one hit with three strikeouts in 2.2 innings of work. Edmoundson finished the day giving up just one earned run with five strikeouts in 6.1 innings of work. Jones paced the Red Raiders offensively with two hits while Hamilton, Russell and Love each recorded one RBI.
Central Arkansas 6, Texas Tech 1
The Bears used aggressive base running to get the scoring started in game two, swiping second base after a leadoff walk in the top of the first. A single up the middle scored the runner from second to give Central Arkansas the early 1-0 lead.
UCA added another run in the second inning after a sac bunt moved a runner on second to third with one out. A two-out single to left scored the runner on third and gave the Bears a 2-0 advantage after two frames.
The Red Raiders were held hitless until Maddie Westmoreland ripped a single down the left field line in the bottom of the third, but she was left stranded at first after three quick outs.
A hit by pitch and single to center field to start the fourth put runners on first and second with no outs for the Bears. The next batter doubled to right centerfield, but a strong throw home turned in to a pickle with two runners stuck between home and third. Westmoreland fired down to third to get one runner, but Russell was unable to gun the runner at home in time as one more run scored to make it 3-0 UCA.
Texas Tech got on the board in the bottom of the inning with a leadoff double by Heaven Burton, who then advanced to third on a hard-hit ball from Jones. Burton scored when Villa hit a ball through the left side of the infield, cutting the UCA lead to two.
In the top of the sixth, a double to left field scored a runner from first who reached on a leadoff single to push the Bears lead back to three. UCA plated two more in the inning with a bases loaded double to left field to make the score 6-1.
The Red Raiders couldn’t find any runs in the sixth or seventh, falling in game two of the Texas A&M invite.
Zoch (1-1) was credited with the loss in the circle with 3.1 innings of work and three earned runs allowed. Morgan Hornback contributed 1.2 innings on the mound and Kamryn Caldwell pitched the final two frames for Tech.
Westmoreland went 2-for-3 in the game with a pair of singles and Villa picked up her first career RBI.
Release provided by Katie Moseley Texas Tech Athletics