Girton propels No. 24 Tech to opening day win
LUBBOCK, Texas – Powered by six innings of one-hit scoreless pitching from junior Brendon Girton, No. 24 Texas Tech defeated Gonzaga 8-4 on Friday afternoon at Rip Griffin Park. The offense flipped a 4-1 deficit with seven unanswered runs, each chipped in by a battery of newcomers that provided all eight RBIs.

“There’s a reason we said what we said before the series,” said head coach TimTadlock about the Red Raiders’ depth for starting pitching. “It’s just really hard to pick. It’s just a tough decision and I’m really glad [Girton] was down there today because he picked us up.”
In the top of the third, the Red Raiders trailed 4-1 when Girton entered in relief. He stifled a Bulldogs’ team that’s appeared in back-to-back regionals throughout his appearance with six strikeouts and just two walks until he closed out the eighth inning to give way to Josh Sanders who shut the door on an 8-4 lead. Kyle Robinson picked up Friday’s start and surrendered three earned runs as the Bulldogs scattered five hits.
Texas Tech’s offense did not waste any time once Gonzaga built its three-run advantage. Powered by a trio of Red Raider newcomers during the next half inning, the game was tied four at-bats into the bottom half of the third. Senior transfer Nolan Hester led off with a base hit up the middle which was followed by freshman Gage Harrelson reaching on an error. Junior transfer Austin Green leveled the game, 4-4, with a 418-foot bomb off the scoreboard in right-centerfield to square the game.

The Red Raiders pulled ahead in the fifth, powered by a newcomer’s long ball again. The Zags’ preseason All-American Owen Wild was lifted after senior Ty Coleman was hit by a pitch. Gavin Kash welcomed the Bulldogs’ new pitcher Reagan Haas by smoking a home run over the last right field wall to give Tech the lead for good, 6-4.

Tech added an insurance run in the seventh and another in eighth to grow the lead to 8-4.

Hester, Kash, Kevin Bazzell and Tracer Lopez led Texas Tech in hits with two apiece. Green paced the way in RBIs with four while Kash owned three.

The series continues on Saturday at 1 p.m. Southpaw Mason Molina is projected to start for the Red Raiders against the Zags’ right-hander Nathan Deschryver.


Release provided by MATT BURKHOLDER  Texas Tech Athletics

More about: