Welcome to Texas Tech, where your lead doesn’t matter and the points are worthless. Let’s dive in to another week of Red Raider sports!
After some struggles the past week, the No. 17 Texas Tech softball team was sure to end the regular season on a high-note; sweeping the No. 21 Wildcats in a two-game series. Their Saturday matchup played tightly between the two teams, but Tech’s ability to score in the first inning and score two to Kentucky’s one in the fifth lifted them to a 7-5 victory. Sunday’s match was a bit more exciting, with a notable three-run rocket from Jessica Hartwell to add to a seven run 6th inning. Tech outpaced Kentucky to finish the sweep with a 9-6 victory. The victory improved the Red Raiders’ regular season to an impressive 38-13 (30-3 against non-con opponents). Up next, Tech will play in the Big 12 Championship on May 10-11 in Oklahoma City.
With the Big 12 race winding up, Texas Tech continues to sweep over competition to stay in the fight. At 14-7 in conference, the Red Raiders are right behind Baylor (14-6) for the Big 12 title and it was their sweep of Oklahoma this past weekend that helped make that possible. Friday and Saturday Texas Tech had to fight back from deficits early on against good Oklahoma pitching and cold Tech bats. The 10-6 and 7-3 victories were capped off Sunday afternoon with a commanding 8-4 victory in Norman. Up next Tadlock and crew will return home to host a doubleheader against FIU before turning attention towards their final conference series against TCU starting May 16.
Coach Stone’s strong recruiting has again been epitomized by their signing of New Zealand midfielder Nicole Mettam. A native of Auckland, NZ, Mettam has invaluable international experience playing for New Zealand’s U-17 and U-20 World Cup teams. Stone remarked that “Nicole’s addition to our squad is a big boost for the upcoming season. She is highly technical and very mature on the ball in the midfield.” Mettam is equally as excited to come and play in the Big 12, stating that “I hope to bring something new to my game through the great experiences I will get playing at Texas Tech and in the Big 12.” Her time in the United States will help build positive associations between United States college’s like Texas Tech and the international soccer stage.
In addition to the exciting signings for Texas Tech, the junior inside reciever McLane Mannix was granted an NCAA waiver to give him immediate eligibility. Before transfering to Tech, Mannix played at the University of Nevada where he committed 107 passes for 1,653 yards and 13 touchdowns. The numbers were substantial enough to garner him Freshman All-America honors in 2017 - only the second in Nevada history. As a native of Midland, Mannix returns back to West Texas with excitement and stress - due to a personal family matter also prompting the transfer. Mannix will step out onto the field August 31 against Montana State, eager to bring success to the Red Raiders.
Coach Stollings continues to build up the women’s basketball program with signing A&M transfer Jada Walton. Walton is a 5’11 guard who worked a lot of games with the Aggies in her two season, becoming one of their prolific ball handlers. “I am extremely thrilled to join the Lady Raider program and the have opportunity to play under Coach Marlene and her coaching staff,” Walton said. “As I begin this new chapter at Texas Tech, I look forward to playing alongside an amazing group of young ladies that will help me grow as an individual on and off the court. Texas Tech Women’s Basketball program is on the rise, and I want to rise with them.” When she was recruited, Walton was a three-star recruit ranked as the 30th best guard in the nation. The staff is very exited to get Walton plugged in with their program and set this basketball team on the right trajectory.
During the Masked Rider Open, Drew McMichael set out to do the only thing he could do after setting a school record last week - set it again. In the meet last week, McMichael topped a mark of 18’1 (5.51m). This weekend he stayed steely-eyed and cleared 18’2.5 (5.55m) to break his own record and set yet another school record. McMichael holds four of the program’s top-10 spots and sits ninth in the nation overall for pole vault. On inquiry about his performance he had this to say, “my form has been getting a lot better. I’ve been jumping really high every practice. I just have to relax at meets and trust my jump. I just need to keep executing my jump better in meets to get those really high heights that I know I can clear.” Tech now looks towards the Big 12 Championships, which will be held May 14-16 in Oklahoma.
MEN'S PV | McMichael AGAIN!— Texas Tech T&F/XC (@TexasTechTF) May 4, 2019
Make it ✌️ straight weeks with a school record for @DrewMicMike, who breaks his own program-best mark from last weekend with an 18'-2.5" (5.55m) today!#WreckEm pic.twitter.com/2pPmYrbHJa