No. 6 Kentucky’s offense exploded once again to take the series against No. 3 Texas Tech. The Cats knocked off the Red Raiders 10-6 thanks to some well-played small ball and Troy Squires’ three-run home run.
This series was primed to be three days of pitching dominance. But once again, it was the offense that stole the show for these two clubs. After UK scored one in the second, Texas Tech hung their first crooked number of the day on starter Zack Thompson. The sophomore lefty struggled with his command in three frustrating innings. Texas Tech took advantage of a shaky start from Thompson to take a 3-1 lead on three runs on two hits, four walks, and two hit-by-pitches in the first three innings.
UK and TTU traded punches thru the middle innings. It wasn’t until the bottom of the fifth that UK would retake the lead. With two outs in the fifth, Squires hit a three-run home run to give UK a 5-4 lead after five innings. Naturally, Texas Tech fought back. Zayne Willems led off the top of the sixth with a solo home run that carried past the Cliff in right field.
After taking the lead with power in the 5th, UK used small ball to blow past the third-ranked Red Raiders in the sixth. With two on and one out, the Cats went with an unconventional way of scoring three runs in a hurry. Trey Dawson, Squires, and Ben Aklinski all laid down bunts that would drive in runs in the sixth. The bunts put all the pressure on TTU’s defense and allowed UK to score three runs on their inability to get a single runner out on three consecutive squeeze plays. The BatCats added two more runs in the inning as they handed down five runs in the sixth inning.
UK’s bullpen was handed a five-run lead after the sixth inning and needed to get the final 12 outs against an explosive offense. Alec Maley, Zach Haake, and Chris Machamer weathered the storm and shut down two late rallies by the Red Raiders as UK finished off an 11-6 win.
Kentucky’s offense never allowed Texas Tech to catch their breath. Every time the Cats allowed a run, they responded. The Red Raiders did not get a shutdown inning after scoring once today as UK ran away with their second win over TTU in as many days.