This is the first installment of a weekly series which will offer quick looks at happenings in the Olympic sports over the last week. The sports will include softball, track, tennis, and pretty much anything else going on in the spring. Which brings me to the opener, volleyball.
Volleyball Spring Tournament
Texas Tech volleyball welcomed Lubbock Christian, Angelo State, New Mexico and Abilene Christian to the United Supermarkets Arena for the second annual Spring Tournament on Saturday, March, 24. The Red Raiders spikers are fresh off of a second place finish in the NIVC last year and are looking to continue their momentum.
They weren’t real hospitable to the visitors as they won all four matches 2-0 while not allowing more than 18 points in any set. Alex Kirby, Haley Killinger and Andrea Janss saw playing time for the first time in their career. Kirby and Killinger are early enrollees after signing with the program in November, while Janss suited up for the first time after redshirting as a freshman in 2017 due to injury. Red Raiders will continue their spring season in San Angelo on April 14.
Track and field continues to blister the records
Texas Tech finished up the Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays this past weekend. Junior Charles Brown closed the final day by posting a personal best long jump of 8.16m (26-9.25). The jump was an outdoor school record and also broke a seven-year record [8.15m (26-9)] previously set by Bryce Lamb at the NCAA Championships (6/10/11). Brown placed second overall.
Senior Trey Culver placed second in the men’s high jump section A. Culver was the top collegiate finisher after clearing 2.23m (7-3.25) in his first meet of the 2018 outdoor season. Other highlights included:
- Divine Oduduru, Andrew Hudson, Tyreek Mathis, and Charles Jones won the men’s sprint medley relay with a time of 3:14.20.
- Freshman Cyre Virgo clinched the high jump section B title, and tied a personal best, with a leap of 1.78m (5-10).
- Brandon Bray captured second place in the Men’s Pole Vault. In his first meet of the 2018 outdoor season, Bray cleared 5.35m (17-6.5).
The Texas Tech Men’s Track & Field team entered the first week of the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) outdoor national rankings at No. 6. This is the highest week-one ranking of the outdoor season since the Red Raiders opened the 2012 season at No. 7. The outdoor season continues at the Sun Angel Outdoor Classic this weekend in Tempe, AZ.
Softball’s tough start
The Red Raiders softball team has a record of 21-15, (1-5 Big 12). At first glance, it looks like they don’t stack up very well in league play. When you take a closer look, you realize they began the season at No. 3 Oklahoma and hosted No. 25 Oklahoma State. Their lone win of the first six conference games came this past Friday against Oklahoma State by a score of 4-3 in eight innings.
The ladies are led from the mound by freshman pitcher Erin Edmoundson. Edmoundson has a 13-6 record with a 2.08 ERA. She also leads the team with 89 strikeouts. She is also a very capable fielder with a .967 fielding percentage.
Junior Jessica Hartwell is the offensive leader of the team with a .388 batting and hitting 10 homeruns on the year. She is also the leader in seven other offensive categories including slugging percentage and on-base percentage at .857 and .474 respectively.
The Lady Raiders will continue the difficult early conference schedule when they host No. 15 Baylor beginning this Friday at 6:00 p.m. The Bears are 20-9 overall but sit at 0-3 in conference after being swept by Oklahoma.
Women’s tennis is currently 13-4 overall and 2-1 in Big 12 action after defeating TCU 4-0 last Saturday at home. The ladies will travel to Waco to take on Baylor on Friday before returning home Sunday to face Texas in their last home matches of the season.
Men’s tennis is currently No. 28 according to the latest rankings with a 17-5 record. They are fresh off of a 4-0 victory over Northwestern last Wednesday after a 10 day layoff. They will begin the Big 12 season on Friday in Stillwater against Oklahoma State and will stay north of the border for a Sunday match against Oklahoma in Norman.