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The Battalion

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The Battalion

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Frizzell walks off Rebels in ninth with third multi-home run game of 2021

Will+Frizzell+had+a+pair+of+home+runs+in+A%26amp%3BMs+win+over+Tarleton+State.
Photo by Megan Cusick

Will Frizzell had a pair of home runs in A&M’s win over Tarleton State.

After its comeback win over UT-Arlington on Tuesday, Texas A&M baseball continued its win streak with a 9-8 walkoff victory over No. 12 Ole Miss.
The Aggies began their third-to-last series of the regular season under Friday night lights at Blue Bell Park against No. 12 Ole Miss, who entered Game 1 with a 32-12 record and on a five-game win streak. A&M looked to build off its Tuesday comeback win over UT-Arlington at Globe Life Park.
The Aggies’ starter was the regular for series openers, Dustin Saenz, who held Mississippi State to three runs in 5.2 innings and struck out eight in his last appearance. Gunnar Hoglund was the Rebels’ hurler, and in his most recent start against South Carolina went six innings and allowed one hit while punching out nine.
Coach Rob Childress said both teams fought really hard in Game 1, especially with both offenses finding their strides on Friday night.
“[It was a] hard-fought game on both sides,” Childress said. “Saenz wasn’t sharp in the first inning and got it back together.”
Ole Miss, SEC leaders in batting average, struck in the first inning to gain an early three-run lead thanks to a double, an error and a sac fly which all came with less than two outs.
But A&M gave it right back to the Rebels to tie it up in the next half-inning thanks to run-scoring doubles from Taylor Smith and Jordan Thompson, which led to the exit of the former first-round MLB Draft pick Hoglund with Derek Diamond getting an early call to relieve him.
Both sides settled in on the mound as scoring stalled for the next two innings until Ole Miss took a 4-3 lead in the fourth off an RBI single, but the Aggies once again flexed their offensive muscles with a five-run fifth frame to take an 8-4 lead. Will Frizzell kicked off the scoring with a two-run home run, as Thompson and Brett Minnich delivered RBI knocks.
Childress said Frizzell’s presence alone in the lineup gets opposing teams’ attention because he’s such a big bat that has proven he can hit, and hit for power at a power-five level.
“He’s a presence, certainly,” Childress said. “He raises the other team’s blood pressure, he’s the one circled in our lineup.”
Thompson said he was thrilled with his performance and has tried his best to remain positive even when not playing, which paid off on Friday with a 2-4 night at the plate with a pair of doubles and three RBIs.
“I can’t really put it into words but i’m very excited and I’m glad I did my job today,” Thompson said. “I just stay positive and try to be the best teammate I can whenever I can.”
Saenz continued to work through the Ole Miss order, but they were able to get to him in the sixth with back-to-back home runs to cut A&M’s lead to two before he was pulled from the game. Joseph Menefee entered onto the bump to finish out the inning but allowed the Rebels to tie the game up at eight after some wild pitches, a walk and a pair of RBI singles.
The ballgame remained tied at eight through the stretch with both managers having sent out their third pitchers of the night. Austin Miller of Ole Miss and Chandler Jozwiak of the Aggies would be the ones to duel it out on the mound into the eighth inning.
Neither team could find their go-ahead run in the eighth frame, and the Rebels couldn’t scratch anything across in the top of the ninth to allow the next A&M run to win the game.
Then on the first pitch of the bottom of the ninth, Frizzell smacked his second round-tripper of the evening and his 15th of the year to walk Game 1 off 9-8 Aggies. It was the infielder’s third multi-home run performance of his senior campaign.
Frizzell said he spotted the first pitch breaking ball and pretty much knew it was gone off the bat.
“It was a first pitch slider and it felt great,” Frizzell said. “We’ve been at the door so many times late in games and it felt really good just to get this one.”
A&M is right back at it on Saturday at 11 a.m. against the Rebels on ESPNU live from Blue Bell Park. Game 3 is on Sunday at 1 p.m. to conclude the Aggies’ second-to-last home series of the year.

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