LUBBOCK, Texas – The regular season ended with a thud, and a shutout, for West Virginia.

Despite putting a runner aboard in every inning but the fifth, the Mountaineers couldn’t break through for a run Saturday, and consequentially, couldn’t break through for a win all weekend against Texas Tech, which completed the three-game series sweep 4-0.

“We’re just a little snakebit right now,” said West Virginia coach Randy Mazey, whose team will carry a seven-game losing streak—and a hefty dose of postseason desperation—into the Big 12 Conference tournament that opens Wednesday in Oklahoma City.

“It’s not like we’re playing bad, we’re just not getting the hits. We’ve hit more line drives at outfielders the last six games than we have the whole season. The 12 games before, we were hitting line drives between guys and down the line and scoring runs.”

Thanks to its late-season skid, West Virginia (27-27, 9-14) sits squarely on the NCAA bubble: It’s RPI still solid at No. 29, it’s win-loss record growing more pedestrian with every loss.

Meanwhile, Texas Tech (40-16, 14-10) has become an NCAA lock and made a persuasive case to be one of 16 regional hosts. Should the Red Raiders wind up playing at home in the postseason, they should be supremely confident, given their 31-4 record at Rip Griffin Park.

West Virginia provided plenty of competition for Tech in the first two games, each ending in walkoff fashion, but Saturday held none of the same drama.

When Adam Kirsch homered in the second inning off John Means (6-2)—the designated hitter’s second solo shot in as many days—the Red Raiders had all the runs they needed. With Dylan Dusek (6-0) working 6 2/3 innings and Dominic Moreno taking care of the rest for his second save, Texas Tech pulled off its third shutout of the season.

Dusek wasn’t overpowering—he struck out one, walked three and allowed five hits—but he was resourceful.

“I knew today would be a day of battling for me,” he said. “I wasn’t there with all my pitches, but I was definitely in my battle mode to get through every pitch. I battled as much as I could and got all the outs I needed, but without the defense behind me I wouldn’t have gotten that far today.”

West Virginia put two runners on twice in the early innings only to see double-play grounders nix each threat. Justin Fox’s grounder led to a third-to-first twin killing ended the second inning, while Cam O’Brien bounced back to Dusek to start a 1-6-3 double play in the fourth.

In the seventh, Fox drew a two-out walk to chase Dusek and Michael Constantini singled against Moreno. But Taylor Munden’s liner to left field was caught by Tyler Nelsony.

Moreno escaped more difficulty in the ninth after an error and O’Brien’s double put two aboard. But pinch-hitter Jackson Cramer struck out before Constantini’s grounder to short ended it.

West Virginia, which stranded nine runners and 28 in the series, has scored three or fewer runs six times in its current seven-game slide.

Means was tagged for four runs, all earned, on 10 hits and two walks over 6 1/3 innings.

His leadoff walk to Kirsch in the fourth led to a run on Tim Proudfoot’s sac-fly. Kirsch also started the sixth with a single and later scored on a double play to make it 3-0.

Tech’s final run came in the seventh when Bryant Burleson tripled and scored on Nelsony’s single.

The Mountaineers, who wound up 0-12 against the top four seeds in the Big 12 tournament and 9-2 against teams that finished fifth or worst, open tourney play Wednesday against Kansas at 10 a.m.

The tourney bracket features two divisions of four teams, each playing a double-elimination format. The division winners face off Sunday in a single-game championship.

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Comments

  • Pete

    Your telling the truth there, Truth Teller! But didn't you know that the person placing WVU under his thumb is Obama? and Nancy Pelosi is making that phone call!!!!

    See, it's Harry Reid's job to help the other team cheat and Biden then bribes the officials for bad calls that go against us. Case solved!

  • TruthTeller

    I told you guys that somebody was going to put a stop to the winning success of the baseball team just like they shutdown the basketball team and also the football team. We fans deserve to know the truth. I know its somebody rich and powerful that is placing WVU under its thumb every time WVU shows like its going to
    be successful. Somebody high up makes a phone call and BAM!!! WVU just starts losing.
    We need to get to the bottom of this and soon!!!

  • Steve

    Our fan base is great. We can't handle losing. We can't win and be humble. Wonderful fan base. I'm hoping our recruits don't read all the BS or we wouldn't get any. I think our fans need to learn how to support a team, good or bad. When we beef up our schedules we struggle until we get recruits that can play at that level. We're going to have problems in all sports until we get to that point. We will get there but it takes time.

  • El Supremo

    Look at the won-lost record at home and separately for road games. Professionals expect to win 50% on the road and do better at home.

    Throw out the "cupcakes" at home and what is the winning percentage?

    • Aaron

      The only home games against non-league teams was wins against Pitt, Ohio State, Maryland and Marshall, both wins.

      WVU was 4-0 against these "cupcakes." So which of the 4 should WVU get rid of and who should they replace them with?

  • Rick55

    Yes they started pressing with men on base. They're college guys. Not only competitive but very emotional. These are the hallmarks of college ball and I as a fan love that about college.

    +1 as usual Aaron. Like how the vultures disappear after wins? They must have been out of town that day. Vultures must have left the building after beating Pitt twice, beat VT, swept KState, 2 out of 3 vs Texas etc An exciting team win or lose. Competitive.

    It's going to be another tough game Wednesday morning, need to get some timely hits but relax a little bit, it's a good team and they just need to let it show.

  • whatamoroon

    Did any of you not see the home record of Texas Tech? Kansas is really tough at home too. It's a lot to ask of any Big 12 to go out and win games at those two venues, now throw in Senior weekend and Senior day and all the other hype home teams do to draw fans and this team played pretty well in a least half of those loses. It's just tough scheduling from a super tough baseball conference.

    • william

      What a fan you are!
      WVU played in the BIG EASY and scheduled cup cake non conf. games the last 30 years and won big then called themselves a great team!
      Now you cry and whine that the schedule is too tough!
      Maybe if you call yourself a great team, then you need to play good teams!
      WVU is far from a great team in any sports
      Fans get use to being MEDIOCRE!

      • AJ

        Shut the hell up William and got root for sPitt.

    • Ron - from Morgantown

      No doubt we are playing some good and great teams late in the season - that's why our RPI has only dropped from 21 to 29 despite a seven game losing streak . We have an opportunity to get healthy in the B12 tournament . It all starts at 9am on Wednesday , breakfast with the Mountaineers - if you can find them on the radio .

  • Aaron

    It appears there is still work to be done but if I recall correctly, the last 7 game skid that resulted in the the vultures coming out in full force was followed up by 10 wins in 12 games.

    This team is very capable of making a long run in the tournament but with the quality of teams, could as easily come home after two games.

    It should be an exciting tournament.

  • Ron - from Morgantown

    Allen - you have a typo - it may seem like we are 27 - 27 , but I think we are 27 - 24 .

    • Ron - from Morgantown

      Mazey started talking RPI way too early - like a month ago he said he would check it daily . That never works . Just play the games until the end of the season and then see if you've made the tournament . 7 losses in a row is bad especially at the end of the season but it could have been 8 , I think WVU had to rally in the 8th inning to beat VA Tech a few weeks ago right after the Texas series . Still surprised at the 29 RPI , thought it would be worse . O - 12 against the top 4 in the B-12 won't help . Is that 10 am start time for the tournament Eastern time zone ( 9 am Central ) - that early . I noticed TT had crowds in the 2700 range for their games against WV . That's good but not great , especially when you factor in their are having a tremendous season .

  • El Supremo

    Not ready for prime time players.

    • Ron - from Morgantown

      WVU could still get in the NCAA tournament with a strong showing in the B12 tournament. Mazey played a tough schedule in anticipation of a close call with the RPI ( and the selection committee ) . We have lost 7 in a row - all on the road . But the B12 tournament gives us a 2nd chance to win some big games . I wouldn't be surprised if we make the finals . Cost to attend the B12 is a great bargain 87$ for all games , and 67$ if you only want weekend .

  • william

    WVU sports is in very bad shape.
    Fans get use to being MEDIOCRE!
    What a huge mistake it was to join BIG 12 for many reasons
    This baseball season has been a failure, 9-14 in the big 12 is not very good
    What a sad time to be a Mountaineer fan wherever you may be!
    MEDIOCRE IS UNEXCEPTABLE!

    • aquarius

      gee william....as your english advisor the word you're groping for is "unacceptable"....think of it like this...."williams english skills are not exceptional..rather they are unacceptable except in non-English speaking third world countries....where they are the norm".

    • Abbagoochie

      No matter what sport it is with wvu each and everytime they implode at the end of the season and cant ever nor ever will win the big game when it counts. The football team is a classic example of this. They blew what 3 chances at a national title by choking. Lol.