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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) robs a home run from Florida infielder Cade Kurland (4) in the top of the ninth inning during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 15, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
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Aggies dominate in season opener against Redhawks

Junior+designated+hitter+Will+Frizzell+watches+as+his+ball+makes+its+way+over+the+right+field+wall+for+a+grand+slam.
Photo by Photo by Meredith Seaver

Junior designated hitter Will Frizzell watches as his ball makes its way over the right field wall for a grand slam.

In the 2020 season opener, the No. 21 Texas A&M baseball team used a nine-run third inning to climb to a dominating 17-1 victory over the Miami of Ohio Redhawks on Friday night at Olsen Field.
Going into this matchup, the Aggies had won 33 of their last 34 opening weekend games, including sweeps of their last six opening day series.
“It was an awful lot of fun to watch,” A&M coach Rob Childress said. “That’s the way we felt all fall, that’s the way we felt in January, that we were going to get incredibly relentless, up and down the lineup. All those guys are sold up to what we’re asking them to do, to play fast and be relentless. We just had pressure on them from the go.”
Entering this season with changes in their offensive philosophy, this newly remodeled A&M offense, now led by former Southern Mississippi associate head coach Chad Caillet, feasted on the Redhawks’ pitching. The team’s 17 runs is its highest as a team since a March 24, 2019, contest against Kentucky, while its 13 hits are the most in an opening day game since the 2017 season opener against Bowling Green.
At the beginning of the first inning, a double by junior third baseman Logan Sartori drove in junior second baseman Bryce Blaum, putting A&M on the scoreboard two at-bats into the game. In the second, the Aggies doubled their lead with a single by senior catcher Mikey Hoehner, with a wild pitch allowing him to score. A flyout by Sartori brought freshman shortstop Trevor Werner home, extending the A&M lead to four by the end of the second inning.
Even with the sizable lead, the Aggie offense exploded in the third inning, scoring nine runs on five hits. After a walk and a hit by pitch put two Aggies on base, an error by Miami of Ohio’s junior infielder Tyler Wardwell brought in A&M’s Hunter Coleman from third base before a single by Werner allowed junior outfielder Zach DeLoach to score. With two outs and the bases loaded, senior outfielder Cam Blake singled to extend the lead to 7-0, before a grand slam by junior infielder Will Frizzell unloaded the bases, giving the Aggies an 11-run advantage.
Not done scoring, Coleman and DeLoach each scored again in the inning, as a double by DeLoach and a single by Alejo continued the scoring barrage for A&M. The third inning included 13 batters, lasted 45 minutes and recorded nine runs.
The offensive firepower that was on display during the third inning is something the team has worked all off-season to showcase, said DeLoach.
“It’s something that we have been working towards as an offense, just knocking a pitcher out,” DeLoach said. “They have some good arms over there, and are a very well coached team. It felt really good to do what we did on a stage like tonight, whenever we got to show everybody what we have.”
After the third, the Aggies slowed down their offensive output, but were still effective at scoring against the Redhawks. DeLoach launched a two-run homerun in the bottom of the fifth inning to extend the Aggies’ lead to 15-1. A Blaum single in the bottom of the seventh brought in two more runs for the Aggies, ending their night with 17 runs.
With pitcher Asa Lacy on the mound, the Aggies defensively shut down the Redhawks offense early. After retiring six of the first eight batters through two innings while not allowing a hit, Lacy dominated in the third, striking out all three batters with ease. Giving up a hit in the fourth inning and a run in the fifth, Lacy finished with six innings pitched, 96 pitches, eight strikeouts and three hits.
After Lacy left at the top of the seventh, the relievers called in to close the game were all freshmen. Left-handed pitcher Will Johnston, right-handed pitcher Mason Ornelas and Alex Magers finished the game, giving up zero hits and one walk while striking out one batter.
“I’m really proud of all three of those guys,” Childress said. “They did an amazing job at just stuffing it in there.”
The Aggies will play the second game of their three-game weekend series against Miami of Ohio on Saturday, with first pitch set for 2 p.m., followed by a noon pitch on Sunday. The game will be streamable on the SEC Network.

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