LUBBOCK, Texas – Texas Tech softball held a 1-0 lead through three, but eventually fell 5-1 to No. 16 Baylor on Sunday in front of a season-best 716 fans in the series finale at Rocky Johnson Field.
Utilizing junior Jessica Hartwell at the top of the lineup for the first time this season, the Red Raiders (21-18, 1-8) struck first as Hartwell scored in the bottom of the opening inning off an RBI line drive to left field from junior Kiana Workman that gave Tech a 1-0.
Tech held the lead until the top of the fourth when Baylor's Shleby Friudenberg hit a two-out, two-run home run to move her atop Baylor's career home runs list. Friudenberg finished the weekend 6-for-8 with two home runs and a pair of doubles.
The Lady Bears (24-9, 3-3) added three runs on three hits and a Red Raider error in the top of the sixth to chase Tech starter Erin Edmoundson (13-7). Tech went to the pen for sophomore Kassidy Scott, who got out of the inning with the first of two double plays for the Red Raiders in the contest.
Baylor's Gia Rodoni (14-6) followed Saturday's complete-game, two hit performance with another complete game on Sunday, allowing three hits and a run while striking out 12. The junior totaled 31 strikeouts in 16.2 innings of work over the weekend.
Workman, redshirt freshman Heaven Burton and senior Allison Knopp recorded the three hits for Tech, which was limited to a combined five hits on Saturday and Sunday after racking up 12 on Friday.
The Lady Bears capture the series sweep as Tech was unable to maintain leads of 5-3 going into the sixth on Friday and 1-0 heading to the fourth on Sunday. Baylor has now won 15 straight against the Red Raiders dating back to 2013.
The Red Raiders now move to 9-7 at home this season and 1-10 for the year against foes ranked in the NFCA Top 25. Next week's series at Texas will round out a challenging early Big 12 slate that sees Tech facing the top four teams from the Big 12 Preseason Poll.
The Texas Tech softball program hosted the South Plains Girls Fastpitch League's opening ceremonies following the game.
Tech shuffled its batting order Sunday to feature Hartwell at the top of the lineup for the first time since Game No. 9 of the 2017 season.
The change moved Karli Hamilton from her usual 5-spot up to the three hole and Burton from her usual leadoff spot to fifth.
A defensive sub late in the game put Karli Hamilton in center field and Heaven Burton in right field for the first time this season.
Freshman Myamie Thompson received her first plate appearance of the season in the sixth and reached first on a hit-by-pitch.
Junior Kenzie Davis received her eighth at-bat of the season, pinch-hitting in the seventh.
Texas Tech is back on the road next week, starting with a trip to Abilene, Texas, where they'll take on Abilene Christian on Tuesday at 6 p.m. in the first of two meetings this season. The Red Raiders then head to Austin to open a three-game set against the Texas Longhorns on Friday at 7 p.m.