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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 players watch fireworks after Texas A&M’s game against Ole Miss on Friday, April 19, 2024 at Davis Diamond. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
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Bye bye Bearkats

A&M softball defeats Sam Houston 7-3 with homers by Cannon and Wiggins
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Photo by Hannah Harrison
Rylen Wiggins (2) smiling after earning a homerun during Texas A&M’s game against Sam Houston State on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024 at Davis Diamond. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)

Texas A&M softball was graced by the Queen of Aggieland, as Reveille X and her handler threw out the first pitch on Tuesday, Feb. 27 in the 7-3 win over Sam Houston State.

In the bottom of the first, senior INF Sav Price pinch ran for junior SS Koko Wooley at second. When she reached first, Wooley went down with a leg injury but continued in the game until she reached second. Senior 2B Rylen Wiggins switched to SS for Wooley as Price went to 2B.

In the circle for the first inning, graduate RHP Shaylee Ackerman was removed in favor of fellow graduate RHP Brooke Vestal. Ackerman struck out one batter, and the other two Bearkats didn’t reach first.

“We called it the Shaylee sandwich,” coach Trisha Ford said. “[Ackerman] was going to throw the first inning, we were going to switch, let [Vestal] throw two to three innings — kind of depending on how things go — then I wanted [Ackerman] to have to come back in. So, practicing for some things that might come up later on in the year.”

Three back-to-back pop-outs for the Aggies’ batters, with junior RF Allie Enright, senior C Julia Cottrill and sophomore 1B Amari Harper falling victim, ended the second inning.

In the top of the third, SHSU senior 3B Kylie Hobbs homered off of Vestal into sophomore LF Keely Williams’ territory to leave the Maroon and White down, 1-0.

A left-field double by Wiggins on the second pitch by Bearkat freshman RHP Abigail Young and leveled the score to 1-1 on sophomore 3B Kennedy Powell’s single with Williams up to bat. The double down the left-field line by Williams exceeded senior LF Chandler Talbot’s reach and allowed Powell to score.

“I want to keep working on hitting pitches that I’m not so good at hitting,” Wiggins said. “So, maybe up-balls or low and away, just keep drilling those balls. I feel like I’ve been doing a pretty good job of spreading the zone with what I’m able to hit lately.”

On a full count, graduate CF Jazmine Hill singled up the middle and sent Williams home with just one out on the board for the Aggies. Hill stole second and collided with Bearkat junior 2B Haleigh Carter in her fight to the bag. Hill ran in on senior DP Trinity Cannon’s homer that hit the scoreboard and forced a pitcher change for the Bearkats.

Freshman RHP Amy Abke stepped into the circle for SHSU in the bottom of the third with two outs to go. Abke walked the first batter she faced in Enright. Stealing second on a wild pitch was Enright as she also advanced to third on Cottrill’s ground out. Ending the third, the Aggies went into the fourth with a four run lead over the Bearkats.

Ackerman and junior RHP Emily Leavitt were warming up in the bullpen as Vestal opened the fourth with two strikes. Vestal escaped the inning without a SHSU hit, and Ackerman returned to the circle in the fifth.

Singling off of Ackerman’s first pitch back, sophomore SS Morgan Holliday speedily scored from her starting position on second off of Hobbs’ single. Ackerman bounced back by striking out Talbot looking. A fielding error by Harper allowed senior CF Ellie Grill to reach first and Hobbs to advance to second.

“We were just testing rotation,” Ackerman said.

Harper recorded a second fielding error, and Price earned a throwing error as Hobbs scored. Price ran to try and tag out the runner attempting to advance to third. While she was attempting to earn an out, Hobbs, who was at third, ran home. In an attempt to get Hobbs out at home, Price threw to Cottrill which earned her an error. The Bearkats went into the field behind two runs with the Aggies holding the lead 5-3.

“Well, we apparently saved all of our errors for one inning,” Ford said.

Abke was approached in the circle by a SHSU coach after walking Hill and Cannon, so junior RHP Daryn Grams entered the game for the Bearkats.

Starting off the top of the sixth, Cannon went to 1B for Harper, who switched to 2B for Price. Cannon’s stint at first marked the first time in the 2024 season where she played a position other than DP.

In the bottom of the sixth, Harper singled and was subsequently brought home on Wiggins’ homer to left field to improve the score to 7-3.

“She’s sticking to the plan,” Ford said. “Getting a good pitch, things that line up with her swing path. I think she’s a senior, so she doesn’t let the moment get to her.”

The Aggies will travel to Fullerton, California to compete in the Judi Garman Classic with the first game against Michigan on Thursday, Feb. 29 at 11:30 a.m.

“I’m just excited to hit the ground running,” Wiggins said.

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