McNeely’s Home Run Lifts West Virginia Over Texas Tech
Caleb McNeely’s two-run home run in the bottom of the sixth inning broke a three-all tie and gave West Virginia a lead it would never lose, as the Mountaineers held off Texas Tech for a 5-3 victory on Sunday at Wagener Field.
The No. 12 ranked Mountaineers were able to rebound from Friday night’s loss by claiming back-to-back wins over the Red Raiders to take the series, while improving to 39-13 on the season (15-6 in Big 12 play).
West Virginia’s magic number to clinch the regular season Big 12 crown also dropped to 2 with the victory.
Texas Tech held a 2-0 lead after one-and-a-half innings following Kevin Bazzell’s RBI groundout and Tracer Lopez bringing in a run via a fielder’s choice.
Grant Hussey answered for the Mountaineers in the bottom of the second with an RBI double before Tevin Tucker tied the game in the third after scoring while teammate Landon Wallace was caught stealing at second base.
Lopez put the Red Raiders (35-18) back in front 3-2 with a sacrifice fly in the top of the fourth, which would be Texas Tech’s final run.
West Virginia’s JJ Wetherholt belted his 15th home run of the season to even the score at 3-3 in the fifth before McNeely’s homer in the sixth set the final.
David Hagaman earned his first win of the season on the mound for the Mountaineers after throwing 3 2/3 scoreless innings of relief, allowing no hits while recording a walk and three strikeouts. Carlson Reed then tossed two frames to record his seventh save.
Got 'em swinging!!@CarlsonReed17 strands the bases loaded in the eighth to preserve the lead!#HailWV pic.twitter.com/1O7H0l26iA
— WVU Baseball (@WVUBaseball) May 14, 2023
Wetherholt pushed his NCAA-leading batting average back up to .466 after going 2-for-4 on Sunday. He was one of four Mountaineers with multiple hits, including Wallace, Hussey and Dayne Leonard.
West Virginia will travel to Texas for its final regular season series beginning at 7:30 p.m. Thursday.