West Virginia Mountaineers: 2
#11 Texas Tech Red Raiders: 0
Alek Manoah, the junior right-hander from Miami, FL, fresh off a performance last week in which he was named Big XII Pitcher of the Week, is headed for another award this week. Manoah threw a complete game, 4 hit, 15 strikeout GEM on Friday night as the Mountaineers shut out #11 Texas Tech 2-0.
It’s hard to say whether I’ve ever seen a more well-pitched game than I did from Manoah tonight. The only thing I can think of would be the insane 20 strikeout game that Max Scherzer of the Washington Nationals had 2 seasons ago vs. the Detroit Tigers. Tonight’s performance was very Scherzer-esque, to be sure.
He absolutely pounded the strike zone, throwing 103 of his 125 pitches for strikes. That’s ABSURD. The fact that he was able to have such outstanding control to go along with his virtually disappearing stuff made it a start for the ages.
Manoah was in control early, striking out 5 of the first 6 Red Raiders to come to the plate, and set down the lineup 1-9 their first time through. He seemingly got stronger as the game went on, eventually convincing Coach Randy Mazey to keep him in the ballgame after TTU RF Gabe Holt hit a single through the middle to lead off the 9th. Sam Kessler, the Mountaineers closer was ready to go in the ‘pen, but Mazey decided to trust his horse and rode Manoah to the victory.
Offensively, WVU did just enough to give Manoah the breathing room he needed.
In the bottom of the 1st, RF Darius Hill hit a 2-out double down the right field line to get in scoring position for 1B Marques Inman, who then drove him home with a RBI single to right field.
In the 3rd inning, WVU struck again with 2 outs. Darius Hill, who scored both Mountaineer runs tonight, hit into a fielder’s choice that got CF Brandon White out. He then stole second, and after a walk to Inman, DH Paul McIntosh came through with a RBI single to center field that allowed Hill to just sneak in ahead of the throw and make it 2-0 WVU.
It’s going to be easy to sleep tonight for Manoah, knowing that he just put on a show in front of a handful of MLB scouts. He won’t get to sleep in too late tomorrow, however, as these two teams with be back at Monongalia County Ballpark for a 4:00PM first pitch. Jackson Wolf will toe the rubber for the Mountaineers, looking to follow up Manoah’s dazzling performance.
See you tomorrow at the WVU Football Spring Game at 1:00PM and then the WVU Baseball game at 4 o’clock!
Let’s go, Mountaineers!