Aggies Lose Series Finale at No. 3 Florida, 10-7 - KXXV Central Texas News Now

Aggies Lose Series Finale at No. 3 Florida, 10-7

GAINESVILLE, Florida – In a see-saw affair that saw the lead exchange hands five times, the No. 1 Texas A&M Aggies dropped a 10-7 game at No. 3 Florida as the Gators completed the series sweep Sunday at McKethan Stadium.
For the second time in the series, the Gators broke the scoring seal first. Florida (27-3, 7-2 SEC) tacked on a couple of runs in the bottom of the first inning. With one out, Buddy Reed threaded a single through the left side of the infield. J.J. Schwarz followed with a double down the leftfield line, plating Reed for the 1-0 lead. Peter Alonso deposited a single in centerfield to put runners on the corners and with two outs, Mike Rivera bounced a single up the middle to knock in Schwarz for the 2-0 lead.
Texas A&M (22-6, 4-5 SEC) exploded for four runs in the top of the third inning. With one out, Austin Homan laced a single through the right side of the infield. Homan stole second base and J.B. Moss was hit by a pitch. Ryne Birk knotted the game at 2-2 when he doubled to the wall in leftfield. Boomer White followed with a single to rightfield to plate Birk for the go-ahead. A double by Melton put two runners in scoring position and Nick Banks plated White with a groundout to short for the 4-2 lead.
The Aggies wrestled the lead from the Gators with a three-run fifth. Moss hit a leadoff triple to the gap in right-center and Birk followed with a two-run home run to right-center to give the Aggies a 6-5 lead.
The Gators shaved a run off the lead in the bottom of the fifth. Mike Rivera and Jeremy Vasquez started the inning with singles to rightfield to drive Brigham Hill from the contest. Ryan Hendrix in from the bullpen and walked Nelson Maldonado. India knocked in Rivera with a sacrifice fly to cut the lead to 7-6, but Hendrix got out of the inning without further damage inducing a groundout to third and striking out Reed.
Florida scored four runs with two outs in the seventh to reclaim the lead. With two outs, Jonathan India drew a walk and stole second base. Dalton Guthrie followed with a walk and a wild pitch put runners on the corners. Aggie reliever Hendrix got ahead of Reed in the count 1-2 and induced a slow roller halfway to the mound that A&M defenders were slow to pounce on, allowing India to score the tying run on an infield single. Guthrie was hung up between second and third, but an errant throw in the rundown allowed him to move to the hot corner. Schwarz knocked in the go-ahead lead by hitting a first pitch offering to rightfield for an RBI single. Mark Ecker came on to relieve Hendrix and allowed an RBI single by Alonso and uncorked a wild pitch as the Gators inflated their lead to 10-7.
The Aggies were doomed by eight walks issued by the pitching staff. Texas A&M starter Jace Vines labored through 3.0 innings, allowing five runs on six hits and two walks while striking out three. Hendrix (0-1) was saddled with the loss, allowing four runs on two hits and four walks while striking out two in 2.2 innings.
Florida's A.J. Puk was brilliant in his first inning of work, retiring all three batters he faced, but he was forced to exit the game with an injury after throwing his first pitch of the second inning. Kirby Snead (3-0) earned the win in relief, allowing one hit and striking out one in 1.1 innings of work. Shaun Anderson worked two scoreless frames to pick up his sixth save of the season.
Birk led the Aggies at the plate going 2-for-4 with two runs, one double, one home run and four RBI. White and Melton each added three hits for the Aggies.
Reed paced Florida at the plate, hitting 3-for-5 with two runs and two RBI. Schwarz added two hits, one double, two runs and two RBI. Rivera and Vasquez notched two hits apiece.
Texas A&M returns to action Tuesday when the Aggies travel to Reckling Park in Houston for a 6:30 pm contest against the Rice Owls.
Head coach Rob Childress
On getting beat by a 15-foot single…
"You think about the two innings they put up crooked numbers and the fourth and seventh and we walked five guys and made a mistake defensively, all be it on the mound. It ends up costing us the game. Give Florida all the credit. Not only are they super-talented, but they played on a very high level and made us pay for every mistake we made."
On if the weekend leaves him thinking of other things the team could've done…
"You can't sit around thinking woulda, coulda, shoulda. We know what we have to do moving forward, but we can't dwell on the past. I know that this team isn't going to be defined by what happened this weekend. There is still a lot of the season remaining. They have the challenge of going to Rice Tuesday and playing the best Aggie baseball they can play."

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