Just as the calendar is turning from April to May, Tim Tadlock's baseball club seems to be turning a corner in the season.
In the last two games, the Red Raiders clubbing 27 hits and scoring 21 runs including Tuesday night's midweek 12-8 victory against No. 17 New Mexico at Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park.
"Coming off a big win Sunday, that was big for us," second baseman Bryant Burleson, who finished 2-for-3 with two runs and one RBI, said. "Then coming out today and getting a good win, I mean that's always going to build confidence and keep that rolling into the weekend. Maybe we get a few more wins this weekend."
Texas Tech (21-24) entered the game coming off a huge 9-3 victory against No. 11 Oklahoma on Sunday, and carried the momentum from the win into its second meeting with New Mexico this season. The Red Raiders with the win against the Lobos are now 4-1 against Top 25 teams this season.
The first time the two teams met it was a 10-3 victory for the Lobos (27-17) on April 2 in Albuquerque, but the second time around was different.
Tech got the bats going early as Eric Gutierrez, who finished 2-for-5 with two RBIs, blasted a Kevin Baumgartner (2-4) pitch to left field for his third homerun of the season in the first inning giving Tech a 2-0 lead.
Red Raiders continued to pour it on in the second inning as Jarrard Poteete led off the second with a solo home run to right field, marking the first time since April 9 against Dallas Baptist the Red Raiders have hit multiple homeruns in one game.
Tech would push three more runs across in the inning, taking a demanding 6-0 lead and Tadlock said he was happy to see the bats get going again early on.
"Yeah, that was really good to see," he said. "I've told some people away from you guys, just friends, it's just a matter of time when Gutierrez's power shows up because it's in there. We've all seen it in batting practice and it showed up tonight when that ball hit that tree. Then we had some big at bats in the second inning and the third inning.
"They did a good job."
With the Red Raiders taking a 9-0 lead after three innings, freshman right-hander Matt Withrow had some cushion to work with.
Withrow (3-3) was able to hold a New Mexico lineup that had averaged 9.7 runs per game during its 10-game winning streak coming into Tuesday's game to just three runs.
The Odessa, Texas native finished the game going five and one-third innings pitched giving up three runs on eight hits while striking out three and walking two.
"Consistency," Withrow said about what's been working for him in his last two starts. "Coach (Ray) Hayward always preaches it. Got to go out there and be consistent."
The Lobos would make a run at the Red Raiders, chipping away at the lead eventually getting within two, 9-7, but that's as close as they would get.
Tech tacked on three insurance runs in the bottom of the eighth, securing the 12-8 victory and first winning streak since beating Kansas and New Mexico State in back-to-back games on April 21 and 23, respectively.
"I think our guys have got something to be proud of," Tadlock said about their recent success. "To go, like we talked about on Sunday, to win (at Oklahoma) on Sunday and these guys have been playing really good, been beating some people."
Tech now gets ready to take on yet another Top 25-opponent as the Red Raiders face No. 19 Oklahoma State in a three-game series this weekend at Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park.
With winning their last two games, Withrow said they just have to keep it going and see what happens.
"Just got to keep it rolling," he said. "Keep that right mindset. We have a little momentum going, keep it in going into the weekend."