EL PASO, Texas – The Red Raiders blasted a single-game program record six home runs to down Santa Clara and sweep the Dr. Diana Natalicio Memorial Tournament Sunday at Helen of Troy Field.
Five Red Raiders (9-2) blasted home runs to set the single-game program record – Makinzy Herzog (2), Carson Armijo, Abbie Orrick, Madelyn Save, and Kailey Wyckoff.
After posting an impressive 6-0 record in the tournament, Kailey Wyckoff claimed the tournament MVP title. Makinzy Herzog, Kendall Fritz, and Arriana Villa also landed on the all-tournament team.
With the win, Texas Tech extended its win streak to eight consecutive games.
Herzog led off the home half of the opening frame with a solo jack to put the Red Raiders up 1-0 early.
A trio of singles from Villa, Ellie Bailey, and Wyckoff juiced the bases with two outs for Armijo. The junior then took a payoff pitch and sent it over the left-field wall, marking the first grand slam of her career.
Fritz (SV 1) worked it in the circle and retired the side in the top of the second to send Herzog back up to the plate as the leadoff. Herzog again blasted the third pitch of her at bat over the right-field wall to give Tech a 6-0 lead in the second.
However, Santa Clara (3-6) took a 7-6 lead in the top of the third after platting seven runs off five hits, a walk, and a hit by pitch. Sage Hoover (4-0) checked in as the second pitching change of the inning and got the Red Raiders out of the jam, only allowing one run and recording the final two outs of the inning.
Wyckoff again did what the freshman does best and tied the game with a solo shot to lead off the third frame. After Santa Clara took a 9-7 lead in the top of the fourth, it was Maddie Saven who came in clutch for the Red Raiders with a three-run blast to put Tech on top 10-9. The home run marked the first hit of Saven’s career.
Peyton Blythe followed directly behind Saven with a single to left field. Bailey then scored Blythe with a double to deep center field. The offense continued to roll with one-out as a walk put a pair of runners on for Armijo.
Armijo stepped into the box and sent the first strike she saw into left field to again clear the bases.
With a 13-9 lead in hand, Olivia Rains entered into the circle for Hoover. Three hits and two errors plated three runs for the Broncos, pulling them back within a run.
As they have done all weekend, the Red Raiders punched right back with a pair of runs to provide some insurance. Jacee Hamlin led off the inning with a single to left field and advanced to second off an error. After a wild pitch put Hamlin at third, Saven knocked her in with a sacrifice fly. A walk and a Wyckoff double tallied the second run of the inning for the Red Raiders.
Ranci Willis entered in relief of Rains and sat down the side to send the game into the bottom of the sixth, where Abbie Orrick led off the home half with a solo shot over the left-field wall.
Despite a walk and single right after Orrick, Tech stranded the two runners in the bottom of the sixth. Looking to close out the seventh, an eight-pitch walk set up Morgan Salmon for a two-run rocket to close in on the Red Raider lead, 16-14.
However, Fritz reentered in the top of the seventh and worked around two singles to record the final two outs and earn her first save of the season.
Texas Tech returns to action in the Mary Nutter Classic next weekend. Game one is set for Thursday against Cal Poly at 12 p.m.
(Texas Tech Press Release)