TTU Men’s Athletics: A Year in Review Part 2
In continuation from part one, TTU Men’s Athletics has had a year full of both ups and downs. While it is the first year returning from returning where sports were nearly shut down the rest of the sports throughout the season are worth a review.
Track and Field
While many of the other sports associated with the university were trying to have bounce-back years. Another TTU Men’s Athletics team is the Texas Tech Track and Field program. That looked to keep up their dominant performance from years past. With a shorter indoor season, the team would fight through the early season. Getting better, doing so by setting many new PR’s and facing some of the best competition in the collegiate world. After all, is said and done in the Big 12, the Texas Tech Men’s Track and Field team would place second as a team behind Texas. They did so by placing in 19 events. With so many athletes placing, the team would advance several runners, throwers, and jumpers to the NCAA Indoor Championships.
While fighting hard and finally short of their eventual goal. The team would place 35th with a single point after day two. They would have names such as Jalen Seals compete in the long jump, where he would place eighth. Jack Scarborough placed 13th in the high jump, Gabriel Oladipo placing 12th in the weight throw. As well as Takieddine Hedeilli, whose hard running would earn him a third-place finish in the 800 meters with a 1:46.84.
After a semi-successful indoor season, the team then turned their attention towards the outdoor season. With a much longer season, the Red Raiders would compete in ten meets. Before competing at the Big 12 Outdoor Championships for the chance to advance to keep their season alive.
After competing all weekend, the men’s team finished fifth place with 85 points. With dozens of athletes competing, the Red Raiders had several compete and metal. The men’s 4×100 would start the day off by earning a bronze medal. With those competing being Courtney Lindsey, Jacolby Shelton, Daniel Omah, and Keion Sutton, who all ran a hard race. Lindsey and Shelton also secured the first two spots in the 100-meter dash. Adding another 18 points to the team’s overall score.
After the solid 100-meter start from the Red Raiders, Gabe Oladipo took the medal in the men’s discus with an impressive throw of 187 feet. With those, the team would then advance.
After the meet, those who advanced would be slated to compete at the NCAA West Preliminary meet for the right to earn a spot at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. The meet in College Station, Texas, was one for the books as the men’s 4×100 ran by Lindsey, Shelton, O’Conner, and Jones Jr recorded the 10th fastest time in Tech history. They would be able to do just enough to qualify for nationals meaning they were Eugene Bound.
Lindsey also was able to secure another metal and advance with a time of 10.15 in the 100 meters. He would also go onto compete in the 200-meter dash, where he would metal with a time of 20.24. Jacolby Shelton also took care of business in the 100-meter, advancing with a personal best time of 10.21 seconds. Not to mention Jones Jr., who earned himself a spot with a wind-legal 20.36.
Now national titles contenders, the team would compete, and while many fell short, it was a season to remember. Jalen Seals would go onto place 10th in the triple jump, making him an All-American.
Transitioning from Track & Field, a shadowed part of the TTU Men’s Athletics program is the Men’s Tennis Team. Who would have a fairly successful season. After a long regular season, the Red Raiders would fight to get to the Big 12 Championship. Unfortunately, in the Big 12 Tennis Championship, No. 21 men’s tennis fell to No. 22 Oklahoma State 3-4.
After wrapping up the Big 12, the team would advance to the NCAA Tournament to face off against Virginia Tech. In the match between the two, the Red Raiders, it was close fought, but in a must-win match, Ilgiz Valiev was able to take care of business. Doing so was one of the main factors that helped propel the Red Raiders to topple the No. 29 Hokies 4-2.
After winning a big matchup against Virginia Tech, the Red Raiders would then be slated to play Georgia in the second round. In the competition, the Red Raiders would 0-4 in an attempt to keep their season alive. However, after dropping the match, the team’s season would come to an end as they would begin to prepare for the next season.
In one of the better seasons in recent years, Texas Tech Men’s Golf proved that they were a force to be reckoned with. Playing ten tournaments before conference play began, the Red Raiders had six top-five finishes and two top-three finishes. After having the successful preseason, the Red Raiders would head into the Big 12 Men’s Golf Championship to finish 5th out of the ten teams competing.
After doing so and advancing, the NCAA Albuquerque Regional was next to keep their season alive. In arguably their best performance of the year, the Red Raiders brought home gold. While it was a team effort, the charge was led by Ludvig Aberg, who finished fourth overall.
After winning the Albuquerque Regional, the team then turned their attention towards the NCAA Championship. In the tournament, the Red Raiders faced some of the best collegiate competition in the country. And while doing so, placed 10th. Nevertheless, the finish was one of the best in recent years and while coming alive so late in the season gives the team optimism for next season.
In most recent news for TTU Men’s Athletics is the Texas Tech Baseball teams’ season. Which recently come to an end. The Red Raiders season seemed to be plagued with injuries throughout. However, they ended their season ranked in the top 10 in the country. With a 39-17 overall record and 14-10 in the Big 12 Conference.
After starting their season 0-3, the Red Raiders then bounced back with a dominant preseason. Following the preseason was the Big 12 Conference regular season. With a 14-10 record, it may not look like it went well, but many may argue it was just the opposite. After knocking off both TCU and Texas in three-game series, the Red Raiders had issues taking care of business. With losses to both Kansas State and Baylor, the team had problems. With the Tech losses, the Tech would not place in the regular season but would then focus their attention on the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship. The Red Raiders began by quickly taking care of Baylor 11-4 but then would lose their next two. Those losses came at the hands of TCU and Kansas State, where eventually TCU would go on to win.
After a disappointing loss in the Big 12 season, the Red Raiders would then be slated to host the 2021 Regional. However, taking on Army, North Carolina, and UCLA, the team was able to take care of business to win the four-team tournament outright.
The Red Raiders would then host the Super Regional at Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park on a hot streak. However, in a heartbreaker, the team would drop the first game 3-15 and then the second 0-9, ending their season. However, with such a disappointing loss to their season, the Red Raiders did receive many awards. A few of those being Cal Conley earning shortstop of the year and many other awards that both Dru Baker and Jace Jung earned.
Also, on top of things, head coach Tim Tadlock is now a Red Raider for life. After being offered and accepting a lifetime contract, Red Raiders can expect many more years of success from one of the best coaches in the country.
To conclude, the Texas Tech Red Raiders had a year full of both ups and downs but battled through adversity in multiple programs. With many new trophies to add to the trophy case and a forever-building resume. Lookout for the Red Raiders to come out in the 2020-2021 season with a chip on their shoulder.
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Written by Campus Live Intern Trinity Porter