COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The 10th-ranked Texas A&M softball team dropped a 10-2, five-inning run-rule No. 13 LSU as the Tigers took a 2-1 series win, Sunday in the Southeastern Conference Series finale.
A rough fourth inning gave the Tigers (35-9, 11-4 SEC) seven runs in the frame as the Aggies (34-9, 6-8 SEC) struggled defensively. Free passes, including five walks and three hit-by-pitches hurt the A&M defense.
A home run by the Tigers in the top of the first put two runs on the board for the visitors, but the Aggies were quick to respond in the bottom of the inning.
Junior Cassie Tysarczyk pounded a ball down the third base line, and the infielder misplayed the ball between her legs as Tysarczyk reached on a one-out error. Junior Nicole Morgan followed her to the plate, battling through a long at bat before ripping a home run over the fence in left to score two and tie the game at 2-2. Morgan had the Aggies’ only two RBI of the day.
A seven-run top-of-the-fourth by the Tigers plagued the Aggie defense. LSU scored on five walks, two base hits, an error and two hit-by-pitches as A&M changed pitchers twice and the game moved to a 9-2 LSU advantage.
A two-out base hit up the middle sent an LSU runner home from second to stretch the Tigers’ lead out to 10-2 and set the game up for a run-rule.
A&M was determined to make a comeback, loading the bases in the bottom of the fifth. Senior Mel Dumezich was hit by a pitch with one out and was replaced by junior pinch runner Allison Garrett. An error by the shortstop put junior Jenna Stark on first before freshman Alex Masek entered to run.
Stark reached base in every plate appearance on the day, going 1-for-2 with a walk and a hit. With runners on first and second and two outs, junior Amber Garza drew a full-count walk to load the bases, but the final out came too soon and three Aggies were left on.
With the win, LSU takes the SEC series, 2-1. Dumezich (23-6) suffered the loss as she allowed four earned runs on two hits and three walks while striking out three in 3 1/3 innings in the circle. LSU ace Rachele Fico (22-7) avenged a game-one loss with the win, giving up one earned run on two hits and five walks as the Aggies were run-ruled for the first time since February of 2012 when New Mexico took a 13-5, six inning win.
The Aggies start a two-week road trip Tuesday when they travel to San Marcos to play a single game at Texas State. That matchup is set for 6 p.m. Central. To learn more about Texas A&M softball, log on to AggieAthletics.com and follow @AggieSoftball on Twitter.