By: Scott Lacefield - Texas Tech Athletic Communications
LUBBOCK, Texas – Texas Tech suffered a 1-0 shutout on Opening Day Friday afternoon against No. 3 Indiana in front of 2,751 fans at Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park. It marked the Red Raiders top home opening crowd since 2003.
The loss snapped a streak of five consecutive Opening Day wins for the Red Raiders and a streak of 14 straight Opening Day wins at home dating back to 1999.
Indiana scored the only run of the game in the first inning after leadoff batter Will Nolden doubled to right-center field on the first pitch of the game. A groundout by catcher Kyle Schwarber to the right-side of the infield moved Nolden to third base and then a sacrifice fly by first baseman Sam Travis scored Nolden for the only run of the game.
The Red Raiders hadn’t been shutout on Opening Day since 2008 (0-4, vs. No. 19 Louisiana-Lafayette in San Antonio) while suffering its first shutout at home on Opening Day since 1959 (0-4 vs. Colorado).
Red Raider junior starting pitcher Dominic Moreno (0-1) went six innings allowing five hits and the only run of the game with three strikeouts and three walks while throwing 78 pitches.
Hoosiers starting pitcher Joey DeNato (1-0) earned the win going six shutout innings giving up three hits and a walk with three strikeouts. Closer Ryan Halstead earned the save pitching the ninth inning recording one strikeout during a three-up, three-down frame.
The game lasted only one hour and 58 minutes, which is the fastest played Opening Day game for the Red Raiders since 1993 (1:50, Texas Tech defeated Howard Payne 6-0 in Lubbock).
Tech had four players record a base hit while sophomore right fielder Eric Gutierrez was the only player in the game with a multi-hit game going 2-for-4. Junior second baseman Bryant Burleson went 1-for-3 with a bunt base hit to extend his career-best hit streak to 15 games (dating back to 2013). Sophomore Tyler Neslony singled up the middle as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning.
Texas Tech and Indiana will continue its four-game series with a doubleheader set for Saturday, Feb. 15 at noon at Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park while the second game of the doubleheader will begin 30 minutes after the conclusion of the first game of the doubleheader.