WVU Pitching Chills Texas Tech

Mountaineer starter Harrison Musgrave struck out 13, allowed no runs and two hits in 6 2/3 innings and Brady Wilson hit a solo homer in the third inning to give WVU all it needed in an impressive 2-0 victory on a chilly night in Charleston in WVU's first ever Big 12 home baseball game.

Musgrave broke his career high of eight strikeouts in a masterful performance and was pulled after giving up a single with two outs in the seventh. While Musgrave said he felt fine, he had thrown 125 pitches to that point, making the decision to remove him a bit easier

The first two innings went fairly quietly as Musgrave sat down the first six hitters of the game. WVU had a single in each of the first two innings, but nothing to show for it on the scoreboard.

It was the third inning when the situation started to get interesting. Musgrave hit Tech leadoff hitter Jake Barrios with a pitch. After striking out the next batter, Brett Bell singled to left to advance Barrios to second. Musgrave then beaned Tech second bagger Bryant Burleson to load the bases with one out. However, the Bridgeport, W. Va. native then struck out Devon Conley and got Eric Gutierrez to ground into a fielder's choice to end the inning.

Bobby Boyd started off the home half of the third inning with a deep flyout, but Wilson followed with his home run to left to give the Mountaineers the lead. The Mountaineers were not yet finished in the inning, as Matt Frazer got aboard after getting hit by a pitch. Ryan Tuntland (2-4) stroked a single into right center field, and when Tech center fielder Brett Bell bobbled the ball, both runners advanced an extra base. At that point, the rally died when Ryan McBroom flew to the warning track in right center to end the inning.

After Musgrave whiffed two batters in a three-batter fourth, the Mountaineers went to work again. Catcher Alan Filauro walked to lead off the inning, and Taylor Munden laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt. Red Raider pitcher Dominic Moreno threw wildly to first, allowing Filauro to reach third and Munden to reach safely. One out later Bobby Boyd laid down a perfect safety squeeze bunt to drive in Filauro. Boyd beat out the throw for a base hit and WVU had runners on first and second with one out. Brady Wilson flied out to advance Munden to third but the runners were left stranded when Rice whiffed to end the inning.

Musgrave got the first two outs of the seventh inning before allowing his second hit of the game, on his 125th pitch. Coach Randy Mazey decided that Musgrave had done enough, and summoned releiver Pascal Paul, who came in and picked off Texas Tech left fielder Brett Bell to end the inning.

Things quickly got interesting in the top of the eighth. Tech second baseman Bryant Burleson stroked a single down the left field line to lead off the inning. Alec Humphreys came on to pinch hit for the Red Raiders and walked on four pitches. Paul quickly got behind 2-0 to Guttierez, and Mazey made a quick trip to the mound to get things back in order. Guttierez lined out to center for the first out. Then Tech designated hitter Jerrard Poteete walked on a full count, loading the bases with one out.

Mazey's displeasure was audible from across the field, but his point was made without any improprieties. He indicated the need to throw strikes, which Paul promptly did, striking out shortstop Tim Proudfoot and inducing Mason Randolph into a routine groundout to second base to escape the jam. That escape led to an eruption from the Mountaineer dugout as the defense ran off the field, leaving momentum clearly in the corner of West Virginia.

After an uneventful bottom of the eighth, Paul returned to the mound to finish off the Red Raiders. Three consecutive ground outs gave Paul his third save of the season and the Mountaineers the victory in their first ever Big 12 "home" game.

Musgrave (3-1), earned the win, allowing two hits in 6 2/3 innings, walking four, hitting two, and striking out 13. Moreno (2-2) took the loss for Texas Tech, allowing seven hits and two runs while striking out four and walking two.

The Mountaineers and Red Raiders return to action at 1:00 p.m. tomorrow at Appalachian Power Park in Charleston in what has now become a double header. Both schools agreed to move Sunday's game to Saturday in anticipation of inclement weather on Sunday.

Corey Walter (1-2, 5.60) takes the mound in the first game for WVU while Tech sends ace Trey Masek (3-0, 0.22) to the mound to try to even up the series.

The second game is scheduled to begin at 4:00 pm on Saturday with John Means (2-1, 1.85) set to take the hill for the Mountaineers and Matt Withrow (2-1, 5.73) scheduled to start for Tech.

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