LUBBOCK, Texas – Looking to bounce back from a tough home series, the No. 15 Texas Tech softball team (30-8, 3-6 Big 12) hits the road for a Big 12 Conference series against the Baylor Bears on April 12-14 in Waco, Texas.
Game one at Getterman Stadium is scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, April 12, and game two is slated for 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 13. The two teams will close out the series on Sunday, April 14, at 1 p.m. Live stats will be available for all three games. A live stream for Friday and Saturday's games will be available on Facebook.
RED RAIDER QUICK HITS
Tech remained the No. 15 team in the nation in the USA Today/NFCA Coaches Top-25 Poll and came in at No. 16 in the ESPN.com/USA Softball and Softball America Top-25 Polls. Additionally, the Red Raiders held on to their No. 16 ranking in the NCAA Women's Softball RPI.
Thanks to the Red Raiders' 3-2 win over No. 11 Texas on Saturday, April 6, Tech improved to 30 wins on the season – its second consecutive 30-win season after going 31-28 during the 2018 season. The Red Raiders recorded 30-plus wins in now 11 seasons – 1997 (34-29-1), 1998 (45-19), 1999 (36-31), 2001 (37-24), 2010 (38-18), 2011 (42-16), 2012 (41-17), 2013 (30-26), 2014 (35-19), 2018 (31-28), 2019 (current 30-8).
As a team, the Red Raiders rank 11th in the nation with a .332 batting average, 15th overall in slugging (.542) and on-base percentage (.416), 18th in fielding percentage (.973) as well as 19th in the NCAA with 6.37 runs scored per game.
Junior standout Karli Hamilton ranks in the nation's top 50 in hits (22nd), runs per game (37th), total bases (47th) and batting average (50th), while holding the No. 5 spot with six triples on the season. In her third campaign with the Red Raiders, Hamilton leads the Red Raiders with 15 multi-hit games. She has collected two hits in nine separate games and leads the team with six three-hit games. Hamilton rides a 12-game reached-base streak into the Red Raiders' series at Baylor and her longest hitting streak this year was seven games from Feb. 15 – Feb. 24.
Showing vast improvement from one season ago, the Red Raiders have improved in numerous offensive and defensive categories. Tech has seen better numbers in 2019 in runs, hits, home runs, RBI, total bases, slugging percentage, walks, steals, sacrifice hits and flies, on-base percentage and batting average while carrying a higher fielding percentage and fewer errors than one season ago. The Red Raider pitching staff has cut its ERA almost in half and has racked up 74 more strikeouts than this point last season. The staff has limited opponents to 75 fewer hits and has posted 10 more shutouts thanks to solid performances by Erin Edmoundson, Missy Zoch and Morgan Hornback.
Tied for the No. 1 spot in the school record book, senior All-American Jessica Hartwell is one home run shy of becoming Tech's all-time career home run leader. In her Tech career, Hartwell has collected 45 home runs. Her next home run this season will place her ahead of alumna Mike Kenney, who set the record with 45 home runs from 2010-13.
Rocky Johnson Field was filled to capacity on Sunday, April 7 as 1,294 fans packed in to watch the No. 15 Red Raiders take on No. 11 Texas. Sunday's game marked the second time fans have topped the Rocky Johnson Field attendance record just this season. The record crowd broke the previous mark of 1,258 set on March 23, 2019, against then-ranked No. 2 Oklahoma.
Helping the Red Raiders to their first game win against Texas since 2016, sophomore Breanna Russell hit the first walk-off of her young career to secure a 3-2 victory over the Longhorns on Saturday, April 6.
Heading into the weekend, Tech leads Baylor in nearly every offensive and defensive category. Before the start of the season, the Bears were chosen two spots above the Red Raiders and were picked to finish third in the Big 12 Conference while Tech was selected to finish fifth in the Big 12 Preseason Poll by head coaches around the league. The Red Raiders currently sit fourth in the conference and Baylor occupies sixth place.
With a series history that dates back to 1996, Baylor holds a 46-16 all-time series lead over the Red Raiders. The Bears won the first seven contests before Tech broke out its first win in a 2-0 decision on April 18, 1998. The Red Raiders won their longest stretch of three games from May of 2007 to April of 2008. Tech upset Baylor, 6-5, in the two teams' last meeting at the 2018 Phillips 66 Big 12 Conference Championship - a win that snapped a 15-game losing streak. Trailing by one run in the final inning, then-freshman Kelcy Leach hit an RBI single to tie the game and the game-winning run crossed the plate thanks to a Baylor error at third base. Head coach Adrian Gregory is 1-12 against Baylor.
First pitch on Friday is slated for 6:30 p.m. at Getterman Stadium in Waco, Texas. Game two will begin at approximately 2 p.m. on Saturday and the Red Raiders will close out the series on Sunday at 1 p.m. Live stats will be available for all three games. A live stream for Friday and Saturday's games will be available on Facebook. For all the latest information on the Texas Tech softball team, visit TexasTech.com or follow @TexasTechSB on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.