Rivalry Week for the Aggies could not be off to a better start. No. 9 Texas A&M took a 9-6 win over the No. 12 Texas Longhorns in front of a record-high sellout crowd in Austin on Tuesday.
Even though it was a non-conference, single-game win, this matchup just means more to the players and fans and it was exactly the win the Aggies needed before facing LSU on the road.
Key takeaways from Tuesday’s game
The Aggies are back on track after a disappointing series hosting Missouri. It was a strange weekend to say the least, finishing in a dead-even split at 1-1-1. Friday night, the Aggies trailed 3-2 in the eighth inning, rallying to score four runs and take Game 1 7-3.
Things got weird in Game 2. Regardless of a slow day at the plate, the Aggies managed to hold a two-run lead thanks to yet another stellar start by Asa Lacy. He punched out 12, allowing only four hits, one walk and no runs through 7.2 spotless innings. However, in a two-out, two-strike situation in the ninth, the Aggies gave up a two-run pinch-hit home run to send the game into extras.
Six innings later, the Tigers claimed a 3-2 lead, ultimately winning a 15-inning pitching battle. On Sunday, the rubber match was cut off in extras due to Missouri’s travel curfew, resulting in a tie.
During Game 2, the Aggies suffered three significant injuries to frequenters of the lineup. First-baseman/backup catcher Hunter Coleman suffered a broken arm, which will keep him out for approximately six weeks.
This is a huge blow to the Aggie offense, as he had just begun to heat up at the plate after consistently starting at first base. Catcher Mikey Hoehner and second-baseman Bryce Blaum suffered injury scares and were kept from the lineup for Game 3. Both were questionable against the Longhorns but opted to play, largely contributing to the victory. Hoehner went 3-for-5 at the plate with one home run, two runs and two RBI.
Even though it was a non-conference game, Aggie fans were relieved to see Blaum and Hoehner in the starting lineup because of their impact on offense and defense and their health is vital to the team moving forward.
Dustin Saenz had his best career performance and it came at a perfect time. The sophomore dominated through six innings, allowing only two runs on four hits. The Longhorns got within a run off of the Aggie relievers, giving them all the momentum heading into the final frame.
Logan Foster responded with two huge insurance runs on a single up the middle, putting the Aggies up 9-6. Kasey Kalich made quick work of the Longhorn bats, picking up his seventh save of the season and sealing the deal on a thrilling victory.
After such an exciting win, the Aggies are headed in the right direction. Texas A&M racked up 14 hits and was able to counter any momentum the Longhorns created, and beating the No. 12 rivals on their home field will give the Aggies full confidence heading into a tough matchup against LSU.
With Hoehner and Blaum back in the lineup, the Aggies can forget about a frustrating Missouri series and move forward.
So long to the orange & the white 👍
Next up, the Aggies head to Baton Rouge for a 3-game series against No. 13 LSU with first pitch at 7 PM on Friday.
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