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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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The Battalion May 4, 2024

A&M downs ‘Horns in Austin with historic hitting performance

The newest edition of the fabled Texas A&M-Texas rivalry took place on Tuesday night, March 29, in Austin, where the Aggies hit their way to a 12-9 win over the No. 8 Longhorns. In the 378th all-time meeting, A&M stayed determined to come back home in good spirits.
The first 30 minutes of the game immediately gave an ultra high-stakes feel, highlighted with the two teams combining for 21 runs and 28 hits in the near-four-hour affair. The second-largest UFCU Disch-Falk Field crowd in history, which had hundreds in standing room-only on top of the filled-up concourse for a total of 7,990 people, was also letting its presence be felt to the A&M dugout from the first pitch.
Graduate outfielder Dylan Rock, who was one of two storylines of this win, said the game had a special atmosphere after transferring from the University of Texas at San Antonio.
“First game in the t.u.-A&M [rivalry] was awesome,” Rock said. “[The environment] was crazy the whole time.”
This was the perfect game to watch for offense, especially with video game-esque stats from the two- and three-hole hitters in coach Jim Schlossnagle’s batting order. Rock and sophomore first baseman Jack Moss went 8-for-9 with 10 RBIs, two home runs and eight runs scored. Those two have been the most dangerous hitters for the Aggies while also being a consistent threat against opposing teams like Texas and LSU in recent weeks.
Most notably, though, Moss made history inside a historic game by hitting for the cycle. In total, he went 5-for-5 with five RBIs, scored two runs and had an extra single to go along with each of his other hits. He was also the first Aggie to complete the feat since 2018.
Texas led 3-2 going into the third, but the theatrics truly began when Moss hit a two-run opposite-field home run to left-center field and gifted a 4-3 advantage to the maroon and white. Texas wasn’t phased, though, and tied the game up once again in the next half-inning.
Rock held up to the recent reputation of being a threat in a way that stunned the sea of burnt orange-wearing fans. With two outs and nobody on base, three Aggies found their way on base just in time for a grand slam off the bat of Rock, who flashed a deafening ‘Horns Down’ sign as he crossed home plate. He ended up going 3-for-5, extending his hit streak to 11 games with five RBIs and a double to go along with the homer.
“He left a slider up, I got my barrel connected and it just flew out — the wind helped me out,” Rock said.
The lead trimmed to two after a two-run shot from Texas, and then the two-out hitting by A&M came back for an important moment. In the sixth, Moss smoked a two-strike pitch into right field for a double that stretched the lead to three. After the win, he’s up to a .393 batting average and has 20 RBIs in 2022.
In the seventh frame, freshman flamethrower Chris Cortez, who’s pitched for more than a few important moments so far, was the fourth A&M pitcher to make an appearance. He gave up a one-out double, but stranded the Longhorns in scoring position with the much-anticipated eighth inning, where Moss made history.
An RBI triple that went down the left-field line and ricocheted off the wall allowed Moss to slide into third and secure the cycle in perhaps the most intense road environment possible.
“I’m not the fastest guy in the world, that’s no secret,” Moss said. “I saw it kick off down the line and had a grin going around second base and was like, ‘I’m getting this.’”
But, before the game moved forward, junior second baseman Austin Bost unloaded with a two-run round-tripper, his second of the year, and moved the scoreboard to 12-6. Texas did get some momentum back in the bottom of the eighth on a sac fly and an RBI groundout to cut the deficit to four.
Then, typical Saturday starter and junior Micah Dallas entered for the ninth inning to get the save and exit with an A&M win. He got a groundout, gave up a solo home run and allowed a man to get to second base with tensions rising, but a called strike three looking would end any hope for a Longhorn comeback.
The 12-9 win was the fourth for the Aggies over Texas in the last five years, and the all-time series moves to 239-129-5 in favor of the Longhorns. Since joining the SEC, A&M is 6-4 against its biggest rival.
Schlossnagle said it was satisfying to get good pitching down the stretch and limit a talented offense. Freshman Rawley Hector tossed three innings and got the win with Dallas getting the save.
“I’m super proud of our guys [with] where we are pitching-wise to piece it together against a nationally-ranked team,” Schlossnagle said. “Micah [Dallas] came to us this morning and said, ‘Hey if you need me to finish the game, I can throw my bullpen on the field.’”
A&M stands at 15-9 this year and travels to Alabama starting this Friday, April 1 for a three-game series. Game 1 is set for a 6 p.m. first pitch on SEC Network+. Game 2 will be broadcasted on SEC Network, and Game 3 goes back to SEC Network+.

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