Red Raiders Drop Heartbreaker At A&M|
March 26, 2006
COLLEGE STATION, Texas - A bases loaded fielding error by Tech first baseman James Leverton led to the winning run as Texas A&M rallied for three runs in the bottom of the ninth to edge Texas Tech 5-4 in the series finale on Sunday afternoon at Olsen Field. The loss robbed the Red Raiders of their first series win at Olsen Field since the 1973 season.
Texas Tech falls to 19-9 overall and to 2-4 in Big 12 play while Texas A&M improves to 17-10 and 2-4 in league play.
Tech reliever Randy Gattis walked the first two batters of the ninth before being replaced by left-hander Aaron Odom. Odom loaded the bases when he issued a walk to John Infante and then recorded the first out of the inning by striking out Jess Buenger. Odom then walked in a run when he issued a bases-loaded free pass to Kyle Colligan. What should have been a game-ending double play turned disastrous for the Red Raiders as freshman first baseman James Leverton overthrew shortstop Kyle Martin and that allowed the winning runs to score for the Aggies.
For the first time this weekend, the Red Raiders grabbed the early lead with a single run in the top of the first inning. A one-out double by freshman left fielder set up a scoring opportunity for catcher Matt Smith and the Big 12 leader in doubles took advantage by lacing his 12th of the year to the gap in left center.
The Red Raiders pushed their lead to 2-0 with another run in the top of the fourth inning. Brian Capps picked up his first hit of the game when he belted a double down the left field line. A fly ball to right field by shortstop Kyle Martin allowed Capps to move to third and one pitch hit later he scored on balk by Aggie pitcher Chance Corgan.
Senior center fielder Brian Capps gave Texas Tech a much needed cushion in the top of the sixth inning when he hit a two-run home run that just cleared the fence in left field. The home run was his first of the season and gave the Red Raiders a 4-0 lead.
Texas A&M's Jess Buenger ended Tech's shutout hopes in the bottom of the seventh when he hit a two-out solo home run to left field. The home run was just the fifth by the Aggie offense this season and the first allowed by Tech since the second game of the UNC Asheville series on March 10.
Texas A&M got another solo home run in the bottom of the eighth from Jess Buenger that pulled the Aggies within two (4-2).
Aaron Odom suffered the loss in relief and fell to 1-2 on the year while Matt Ueckert earned the win for A&M and improved to 4-1.
Texas Tech is not scheduled to play again until the weekend when the Red Raiders play host to the Baylor Bears in a three-game series at Dan Law Field. The Tech-Baylor series gets underway at 6:30 p.m. on Friday evening and will be televised in Lubbock on the Texas Tech Television Network. Should a midweek game be added on Tuesday, Red Raider fans can find ticket information and complete game details at www.texastech.com.