OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. - The No. 2 Texas Longhorns had their hopes of winning a third-straight Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship dashed when they lost a 4-2 decision to the Texas Tech Red Raiders at AT&T Bricktown Ballpark on Thursday afternoon. The loss dropped the Longhorns to 0-2 in pool play and made it impossible for Texas to advance to the title game.
Texas (46-10) had won the tournament title in 2008 and 2009 despite dropping the first game, but the Longhorns were unable to overcome two infield errors and a pair of home runs by the Big 12 Freshman of the Year Barrett Barnes.
Texas Tech (28-28) broke the scoring seal in the home half of the first inning when Barnes hit a 2-2 offering from Texas starter Taylor Jungmann over the leftfield fence for a solo home run.
Texas responded with an unearned run in the top of the third inning. Cohl Walla reached on an error when Barnes, Tech's first baseman, misplayed a ground ball to start the inning. With one out, Cameron Rupp singled to rightfield to put runners at the corners. Russell Moldenhauer beat out a potential double play throw at first, allowing Walla to score, tying the game at 1-1.
The Red Raiders reclaimed the lead with three unearned runs in the fifth inning. Taylor Ashby and Jamodrick McGruder reached on fielding errors by third baseman Kevin Lusson and shortstop Jordan Etier, respectively to put runners on the corners. A squeeze bunt by Joey Kenworthy played Ashby with the go-ahead run and Barnes followed with his second home run of the day, a two-run job to inflate the Texas Tech cushion to 4-1.
Texas showed life in the eighth inning, but could only manage one run. With one out, Tant Shepherd singled up the middle and Rupp followed with a single through the right side. After Bobby Doran entered the game to replace Tech starter Chad Bettis, he issued a walk to Moldenhauer to load the bases. Kevin Keyes hit a fielder's choice grounder to shortstop to drive in Shepherd, but it was the only run the Horns would push across as Kevin Lusson was called out on a strike three in the left-handed batters' box.
Jungmann (6-3) was saddled with the loss. He yielded four runs, one earned, on eight hits and one walk while striking out three in 6.0-plus innings of work. Stayton Thomas and Chance Ruffin each worked scoreless innings of relief.
Bettis (7-4) equaled a career-high with 10 strikeouts as he earned the win after sitting out a four-game suspension. He allowed two runs, one earned, on seven hits over 7.1 innings. Doran earned the save, allowing just one walk while striking out two over 1.2 innings.
Cameron Rupp was the lone Longhorn to register a multiple-hit game, going 3-for-4 on the afternoon.
Barnes paced Tech's offense, going 2-for-3 with two runs, two home runs and three RBI. Michael Reed added two hits for the Red Raiders who logged eight hits and drew four walks.
The Longhorns wrap up action at the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship on Saturday with a 12:30 p.m. game against the Texas A&M Aggies.