In what has to be one of the biggest moments of the season, Texas A&M faced off against Texas on Sunday in an elimination game. The College World Series can be brutal for a team already on the losers side of the bracket, but the Aggies will be staying in Omaha a bit longer after defeating Texas 9-2.
It has to be a bit of satisfaction for the Aggies to be the one sending Texas home, winning their second game against the Longhorns this season.
It felt as if we were setting ourselves up for a pitchers duel between Mchah Dallas and Lucas Gordon, but the Aggies sent Gordon to the dugout in the 2nd inning. Trailing 2-1 entering the inning, Texas A&M would blow open the game and force the Longhorns to change pitchers. It was the 12-pitch at bat for Trevor Werner that ended with a 2-run single and gave the Aggies a 4-2 lead the opened up the game.
Aggies head coach Jim Schlossnagle was encouraged by what he saw out of Werner during that at-bat, knowing the 2-out hitting bit them during the first loss in Omaha.
“Obviously it was important. Two-out hitting was a big part of the game. It’s a big part of why we lost the other day.”
The Longhorns would never recover after starting pitcher Lucas Gordon was pulled after throwing 53 pitches in 1.2 innings of work. Aggies skipper Jim Schlossnagle had his team pushing the right buttons at the plate. Now with the Longhorns on the ropes over the next five innings due to fantastic defense from the Aggies, Texas A&M led 9-2 in the 7th inning.
The credit should go to Aggies pitcher Micah Dallas, who threw five innings, only giving up runs and striking out three batters. Another long run from the starting pitcher allowed the Aggies to use Jacob Palisch for 2.2 innings and record five strikeouts. As for beating Texas, Micah Dallas knew there would be some extra juice in playing the Longhorns on Sunday.
“It’s a lot of fun, but at the end of the day, it’s about playing the same game and playing a nameless opponent. There is a little extra behind it when it’s Texas. Look at the fanbases. There is some genuine hate on both sides.”
Jim Schlossnagle pointed out that the Florida game during the SEC Tournament was a turning point for Dallas, who looked fantastic against Texas.
“He was throwing his fastball, and he was throwing it down. That was a big difference. He has to have his fastball down. I think the Florida game in the SEC Tournament kind of got his swagger back.”
Aggies centerfielder Jordan Thompson went 2-2 with 2 RBI’s, helping the Aggies offense put away the Longhorns.
Just like for most of the season, the Aggies just continued putting their foot on the throat of opponent for the rest of the game, finally finishing off the Longhorns in the 9th.
The win now moves Texas A&M into a matchup with Notre Dame, who lost to Oklahoma Sunday night. The two teams will square off on Tuesday at 2:00PM ET.
The Aggies survived on Sunday, so let’s see if they can extend their stay in Omaha on Tuesday.