MANHATTAN, Kan. Kansas State could only mange four hits on three different Texas Tech pitchers as the Red Raiders shut out the 10th-ranked Wildcats, 6-0, Friday evening at Tointon Family Stadium. With the win, Texas Tech improved to 22-27 overall and 10-12 in Big 12 play. The Wildcats, who suffered their first loss since April 18, fell to 37-12-1 overall and 12-8-1 in conference action.
The Wildcats’ four hits were the second fewest of the season, while it was the first time K-State had been shut out since April 13 last season against Baylor.
A.J. Morris suffered his first loss of the season in 13 tries, allowing five earned runs on 10 hits both season highs in eight innings of work. The right-hander, who fell to 11-1, walked two batters and struck out five.
Texas Tech’s Nate Karns (4-5) gave up just one hit in 5.1 innings. Adam Muenster singled to lead off the K-State first against Karns, but that proved to be the only Wildcat hit until a Jason King single in the seventh inning. A groundball double play to end the first frame began a string of 15-straight outs, which included 11 groundouts.
Robert Kilcrease and Chad Bettis shut out the Wildcats the final 3.2 innings as the duo was able to work around a late K-State charge. The pair of relief pitchers forced the Cats to strand eight runners on base in the final four frames including six in scoring position to preserve the win.
Muenster recorded half of the K-State hits, going 2-for-2 with a pair of walks. King and Jordan Cruz tallied the other two Wildcat base hits.
Four different Tech hitters registered multi-hit contests, including Michael Reed, who was 3-for-4 with four runs scored. Chris Richburg paced the Red Raiders with three RBI.
Texas Tech punched across a run in the first inning as three-straight one out singles, the last by Richburg up the middle, scored Reed.
The Red Raiders also plated a run in the third when Reed led the frame off with a double just inside the right-field line, moved to third on a groundout and scored when Richburg hit a sacrifice fly to put Tech up by two.
Reed scored the third run in very similar fashion the next inning when he doubled to right-center, advanced to third on a groundout and scored when Morris uncorked a wild pitch, making the score 3-0.
The Texas Tech offense continued to rack up hits against Morris as they plated two runs in the sixth inning to put the game away. Justin Berry hit a one-out solo home run, which was followed by a Kengray Fleming single. Fleming then stole second base and scored on when Willie Rueda doubled.
and Texas Tech continue its three-game conference series on Saturday with a 2:00 p.m. first pitch at Tointon Family Stadium.