The No. 2 Texas Tech baseball team returns home to host UNLV for a two-game series, beginning Tuesday at Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park.
Tuesday's first pitch is currently set for 6:30 p.m., while Wednesday's game time has been shifted up an hour to a 1 p.m. start. Both contests will stream on TexasTech.TV and can be heard on the Texas Tech Sports Network with Geoff Haxton and Jamie Lent on the call.
Individual game tickets are available at www.TexasTech.com, by calling 806-742-TECH, or at the Rip Griffin Park ticket office starting two hours prior to first pitch. A reminder that Texas Tech's clear bag policy is in effect.
The Red Raiders (11-1) will trot out sophomores Mason Montgomery and Hunter Dobbins on the mound. Montgomery is 2-0 in his two starts with a 2.00 ERA. Dobbins, meanwhile, sports a 1-0 record and a 2.57 ERA. Both Red Raiders earned the win in their midweek starts last week against Southern.
UNLV (3-8) will counter with freshman left-hander Noah Mattera on Tuesday and sophomore right-hander Troy Balko on Wednesday. Mattera is 0-1 in two starts with a 4.82 ERA, while Balko (0-0) will make his first start of the year and look to build on his 6.00 ERA.
Tuesday's meeting with UNLV will be the 19th all-time between the two schools on the diamond. The series is currently split 9-9, while Tech is 3-1 against the Rebels under head coach Tim Tadlock. The clubs last met in back-to-back seasons in 2016 and 2017 with the Red Raiders splitting a two-game series in Las Vegas in 2016 before sweeping a pair of games in Lubbock in 2017.
The series opens a five-game home stand that kicks off a month-long stretch with 16 of its next 20 games in front of the Red Raider faithful at Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park.
COMING IN HOT
The Red Raiders are coming off a 5-0 week, sweeping Southern during the midweek before going unbeaten in Tallahassee with a win over Florida Atlantic and a two-game sweep of No. 9 Florida State on their home field.
The Texas Tech bullpen flashed its muscle and depth over the weekend in Tallahassee as six different relievers combined to pitch 15.2 innings and allow just one run on eight hits for a 0.57 ERA. The bullpen earned all three wins and picked up a save as it struck out 24 batters and walked five.
AWARDS & RANKINGS
Senior second baseman Brian Klein was tabbed Big 12 Player of the Week following Tech's perfect week. Klein hit safely in all five contests, including four multi-hit games, and reached base in 7-of-10 trips to the plate against the Seminoles. In Sunday's comeback win, he doubled to lead off the eighth and scored the go-ahead run on a Cody Masters sacrifice fly that keyed the 4-3 win.
In the rankings this week, Texas Tech holds firm at No. 2 in the Baseball America poll while rising a spot in both the NCBWA rankings and the Collegiate Baseball poll. The USA Today Coaches Poll, which slotted the Red Raiders at No. 3 in the preseason, released its first poll since the season began and moved the Red Raiders down to No. 4.
At home this season, Tech is a perfect 6-0 with an 88-16 run differential. The Red Raiders are slugging .687 as a team at the Law, averaging over two home runs per contest.
Texas Tech is 2-0 in midweek contests so far this season, sweeping a two-game series with Southern by a combined score of 23-5. Midweek starters Mason Montgomery and Hunter Dobbins both earned wins as they look to do the same this week against UNLV.
Head coach Tim Tadlock enters the week four wins shy of 300 for his tenure at Texas Tech. He would become the third coach in program history to 300 wins, joining Larry Hays (813) and Kal Segrist (317). Tadlock would be the fastest of the three to reach the milestone.
Texas Tech has 16 of its next 20 games at home through the end of March. With a front-loaded Big 12 home slate, Texas Tech will have only two Big 12 home series remaining once the Calendar flips to April.
As the schedule currently lies, Tech will see no more than one day off between games from Feb. 21 through March 29. For five straight weeks, the Red Raiders will be in action five days a week. The next time Tech will enjoy two days between games is March 30-31. Overall, it's a stretch of 28 games in 38 days through the end of March.
Texas Tech will battle former Southwest Conference foe Rice in a three-game set at Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park over the weekend. The Red Raiders and Owls will square off at 6:30 p.m. Friday, 2 p.m. Saturday and 11:30 a.m. Sunday. The first two games will be available on TexasTech.TV, while the finale will be broadcast on FOX Sports Southwest Plus.