The first Big 12 matchup for the No. 11 Texas Tech baseball team will start at 6:30 p.m. Friday, March 15, to start a three-game series against No. 12 Texas in Austin.
The Red Raiders and Longhorns will continue play at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, March 16, and 1 p.m. Sunday, March 17. All three games will be aired on the Longhorn Network.
Texas has a 13-6 record this season and is coming off a 17-3 win against Texas Southern, according to D1Baseball. In their first series against a ranked opponent, No. 13 LSU, the Longhorns swept the Tigers in a three-game series with 8-1, 8-4 and 7-6 wins. In the most recent matchup against No. 4 Stanford, the Longhorns only won one game of the four-game series.
Tech holds an 11-3 record this season with its only three losses being against Oregon, Nebraska and No. 6 Mississippi State, according to D1Baseball. After losing two straight games on the road, the Red Raiders won their past five games as senior Cameron Warren was awarded Big 12 Player of the Week and NCBWA Hitter of the Week. Sophomore Dylan Neuse also picked up an award, being named the Big 12 Newcomer of the Week.
On the offensive end, Ryan Reynolds leads the Longhorns with a .333 batting average and 23 hits this season, according to Texas Athletics. Todd Austin leads the team with 21 RBIs and is one of three Longhorns to have two home runs this season. Duke Ellis leads the team with 20 runs scored and has stolen seven bases in seven attempts.
For the Red Raiders, junior Brian Klein leads the team with a .426 batting average and 23 hits this season, according to Tech Athletics. Neuse is right behind Klein with a .396 batting average on 21 hits and leads the team with 20 runs and 22 RBIs. Neuse also has hit four home runs, putting him behind Warren who leads the team with five.
As a team, the Longhorns have a combined .264 batting average, according to Texas Athletics. The Longhorns have also scored 117 total runs off 161 hits, 11 home runs and 103 RBIs this season.
The Red Raiders have a .310 combined batting average, according to Tech Athletics. Tech has scored 127 runs and has tallied 149 hits, 20 home runs and 121 RBIs.
On the mound, Texas will start the series with RHP Bryce Elder on Friday and RHP Blair Henley on Saturday, according to Tech Athletics. The pitcher of the Longhorns on Sunday has not yet been decided.
Elder comes into Friday’s game with a 1.54 ERA after pitching a team high 23.1 innings and only giving up four earned runs, according to Texas Athletics. He also leads the team with 27 strikeouts and has only given up 20 hits this season. Henley currently holds a 4.79 ERA after giving up 11 earned runs in 20.2 innings. He has struck 18 batters outs and has given up a team high 22 hits.
Tech’s head coach Tim Tadlock will start redshirt junior LHP Erikson Lanning on Friday, junior RHP Caleb Kilian on Saturday and freshman LHP Mason Montgomery on Sunday, according to the release.
Lanning has the lowest ERA out of the three pitchers, earning a 1.69 ERA, as he has only given up three earned runs in 16.0 innings, according to Tech Athletics. Lanning also leads the team with 16 strikeouts.
Kilian has had a rough start to the season with a 9.19 ERA, giving up 16 earned runs in the 15.2 innings. Kilian has given up a team high 23 hits this season.
Montgomery has a 5.02 ERA as he has given up eight earned runs in 14.1 innings pitched. He has struck 13 batters out and is the only starter this series who has not given up a home run.
After their series against the Longhorns, the Red Raiders will head back home to play five days in a row against Michigan and Stetson at Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park. The Red Raiders will play Michigan on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, followed by Stetson on Sunday and Monday.