WVU baseball ends eventful week with rout of No. 9 Texas Tech – The Gold and Blue Nation Podcast
West Virginia wanted some ninth inning insurance runs, and it got just what it wanted — and much, much more.
The Mountaineers blasted 10 runs onto the scoreboard in the final frame to complete a 15-4 victory over No. 9 Texas Tech Sunday, which saw WVU log 18 hits to more than triple its offensive output for the three-game series.
Freshman Evan Smith stole the show from the designated hitter spot in that final frame when he knocked a grand slam off of Brendan Lysik, bringing his RBI total on the weekend to six. He finished the series 3-for-6 with a double and the homer.
The scoring party started early for WV when the Mountaineers started the game with three hits in their first three at-bats. Leadoff hitter Austin Davis sent the first pitch of the game down the left field line for a double before stealing third. JJ Wetherholt then knocked him in with a single before eventually getting hit home himself by McGwire Holbrook.
That was good enough to end TTU starter Chase Hampton’s day early. He managed to get just one out in 25 pitches, and was credited with both of WVU’s first inning runs.
Cole Stilwell responded for the Red Raiders in the third after a big Saturday, scoring Easton Murrell from first with a double. Parker Kelly then tied it in the next inning with an RBI double.
WVU jumped in front with a three-run fifth inning. Austin Davis led the frame off with his second of five hits, and was eventually hit home by Victor Scott II. Braden Barry added an RBI double, then was scored by Grant Hussey in the next at-bat.
Stilwell chipped away at the lead in the bottom of the fifth with a solo home run to left field. That ended Zach Bravo’s day on the mound, as the WVU starter sat in the dugout with three runs on six hits in 4.1 innings of work.
Chase Smith (1-1) took the bump in Bravo’s relief and earned the win. He was the first of three relievers for the Mountaineers, which combined to allow one unearned run on four hits in the final 4.2 innings of play.
Stilwell added his third RBI of the game in the seventh inning on a sacrifice fly, cutting the deficit to a run. It proved moot by the ninth inning, however, as WVU went on to blow the game open in that final frame.
Wetherholt finished his three-RBI day by knocking in runs in two separate at-bats in the ninth. Davis did the same for both of his runs batted in, but the story of that last-inning rout was Smith’s grand slam.
Ty Coleman led Texas Tech with a 3-for-4 day and was one of four Red Raiders to record multiple hits. Mason Molina (1-5) took the loss on the mound after relieving Hampton in the first inning.
West Virginia stole two bases in the contest — one by Davis and another by Ben Abernathy. That brings the campaign total to 130, 15 more than the program’s previous single-season record.
The Red Raiders (29-14, 9-6 Big 12) take the series two games to one despite the loss and hold a tiebreaker over No. 10 Texas for the third spot in the Big 12 standings. WVU (24-14, 7-5) remains knotted with Oklahoma for fifth place.
The Mountaineers return to Monongalia County Ballpark for their next contest on Wednesday when they host Penn State. First pitch is set for 6:30 p.m. ET and it will be shown on Big 12 Now on ESPN+.