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Red Raider Hardball :: Texas Tech Takes First Game From Longhorns

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Texas Tech (12-12, 2-2) vs. Texas (16-6, 2-2)
Location: Dan Law Field : Lubbock, TX
Radio: Affiliates
Date Start Time Texas Tech
Starting Pitcher
Texas A&M - CC
Starting Pitcher
Result
3.26.10 6:30 p.m. John Neely
W, 2-0
Taylor Jungmann
L, 2-1
W: 12-5
3.27.10 6:30 p.m. Bobby Doran
0-1, 4.97
Cole Green
4-0; 3.00
-
3.28.10 (FSN) 12:00 p.m. TBA
-
Brandon Workman
3-1, 2.94
-
Outfield:
LF - Michael Reed (Sr.); CF - Taylor Ashby (Sr.); RF - Barrett Barnes (Fr.)
Infield:
SS - Joey Kenworthy (Sr.)     2ND - Jamodrick McGruder (Fr.);
3RD - Bo Altobelli (Fr.)                                  1ST - Jeremy Mayo (So.)
C - Kevin Whitehead (So.)
DH - Scott LeJeune (So.)

*Click on the score for boxscore. Texas Tech series preview (pdf).

Recap: Are you kidding? If you haven't clicked on the boxscore link, go ahead and take a look at what the pitchers did yesterday, which was nothing short of tremendous. SP John Neely (5.0 IP; 7 H; 1 ER; 1 BB; 1 SO) was incredibly effective and the struggling RP Jay Johnson (2.1 IP; 1 H; 1 ER; 1 BB; 3 SO) was also pretty good. The only guy that struggled was closer/starter Chad Bettis (1.2 IP; 3 H; 3 ER; 2 BB; 2 SO), which doesn't make any sense. As an aside, the wind was clocked at 31 MPH yesterday and there's a chance that today's game may not be played. The offense exploded with 11 hits and 12 runs. Homeruns by freshmen 2B Jamodrick McGruder (1-4; 3 R; 2 RBI; 1 HR) and 1B Barrett Barnes (1-3; 3 R; 2 RBI) led the offense, but this was a collective effort as nine different players had a hit yesterday. LF Michael Reed (2-3; 2 R; 2 RBI) and C Jeremy Mayo (2-3; 2 R; 2 RBI) also each contributed two RBI a piece.

This is the effort that I think we've been looking for from this team. I've always felt that the pitchers are better than what they've been and the hitters are have been really good, especially with McGruder at the top of the lineup. Head coach Dan Spencer also talked about the offensive lineup:

On the decision to go with the offensive lineup to play in the wind: "When you got (Taylor) Jungmann going at you, you have to be offensive. Thing is, people don't understand how much work Scotty (LeJeune) has done to get where he's at. He went out yesterday and took balls. He went out before batting practice and took more balls, took more balls in batting practice. He's such a good athlete that having him on the field obviously frees up that designated hitter spot for Whitey (Kevin Whitehead) too if the pitcher is right-handed. Just him doing that and having enough courage to do it after he's had some bad things happen to him out there, that takes a lot of character and guts to do that."

And Spencer also talked about Neely's performance:

On the early lead helping extend John Neely's pitching today: "It really helped us because with Chad (Bettis) in the bullpen and Jay (Johnson), we feel pretty good about our two-headed monster. With (John) Neely going five, it really shortened the game. Getting him through a fifth (inning) and he builds on this, he can go five or six and turn into a guy we can really depend on, which he has. It just helps us. Getting the five out of him keeps someone else from coming out of the bullpen early that is tired. We used a lot of guys on Tuesday and Wednesday and we had some guys like (Colt) Farrar, (Ben) Flora and even (Brett) Bruening, who needed another day. We're a little more locked and loaded with those guys now."

Game Recap: LAJ's George Watson has the recap:

With a seemingly gale-force wind blowing out to left, No. 8 Texas and Texas Tech approached Friday night’s Big 12 Conference series opener at Dan Law Field from two different directions.

Texas chose to play a defensive lineup and even made some late changes in the batting order. Tech, facing stellar UT right-hander Taylor Jungmann, decided to play it offensively with as many left-handed batters as possible.

Turns out, the Red Raiders know how to play in their home park.

Freshmen Barrett Barnes and Jamodrick McGruder each ripped two-run home runs early, right-hander John Neely pitched five stellar innings and the Red Raiders got to Jungmann early and often en route to a 12-5 victory against the Longhorns in front of a season-high attendance of 3,824.

"(Winning) the first game of the series is huge against anybody," Tech head coach Dan Spencer said. "Getting it against Texas is great, obviously. I can’t say enough about our guys’ approach at the plate and we did a really good job against a right-hander, and Neely was tremendous. It was a tough environment to pitch in with the wind blowing the way it was. We got the momentum early and got them on their heels."

Video Recap: I added some Fox34 video: