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Aggies Rally from Early Deficit to Defeat UTPA

March 13, 2012
Courtesy: Texas A&M Athletics
(photo: Texas A&M Athletics)

COLLEGE STATION, Texas - The No. 8 Texas A&M baseball team handed visiting Texas-Pan American a 10-4 defeat Tuesday night on Olsen Field at Blue Bell Park during the opening contest of a two-game mid-week series.

"I thought we played really well," Texas A&M head coach Rob Childress said. "The way we came out and hit the ball today was outstanding and we were great on the bases. I thought we just played really well offensively. The bullpen came in there at the end of the game and was outstanding."

The Broncs jumped out to an early advantage against A&M starter Corey Ray, collecting four hits and three runs during their first turn at bat against the Aggie right-hander.

Ray was hit hard in the contest as he allowed seven hits in 3.2 innings of work but was picked up by the Aggie bullpen, which tossed 4.1 scoreless innings. Senior lefty Estevan Uriegas (3-0) picked up the win by throwing a perfect sixth inning.

Texas A&M hit the comeback trail in the bottom of the second as senior first baseman Jacob House drew a leadoff walk and was joined on base by designated hitter Chance Bolcerek and centerfielder Krey Bratsen, who each collected bunt singles. Sophomores Troy Stein and Jace Statum took advantage of the bases-loaded, no-outs situation with back-to-back sac flies to cut the deficit down to 3-2.

After the Broncs had taken a 4-2 lead in the top of the fourth, Stein pulled Texas A&M back within a single run with a sharply hit RBI double to left center.

House recorded his second RBI of the game and tied the contest at 4-4 during the bottom of the fifth with an RBI double. The base knock extended the Mansfield, Texas, native's season-best hitting streak to eight games.

All-American outfielder Tyler Naquin put the Aggies ahead for good in the contest, plating a pair with a two-run double to deep right field in the bottom of the sixth. House again came through at the plate two batters later as he hit a sac fly to right field. During the play a second A&M run came home to score as UTPA tried unsuccessfully to throw out a runner advancing to second, allowing the Aggies to take an 8-4 lead.

Texas A&M added a pair of insurance runs in the home half of the seventh, scoring on a Statum RBI single and a UTPA balk.

The series continues Wednesday afternoon as the two teams square off in a 3:05 p.m. contest on Olsen Field at Blue Bell Park. Texas A&M will send Derrick Hadley (1-0, 6:35 ERA) to the mound against UTPA right-hander Colby McCasland (1-0, 0.00 ERA).
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