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

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

The Battalion

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No. 16 Aggies power past Mississippi State to clinch sixth-straight series

Photo by Robert O’Brien

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On May 14, Texas A&M baseball competed in Game 2 of its three-game series against Mississippi State at Olsen Field. The 9-6 victory highlighted the Senior Day celebrations, commemorating five athletes who started their careers in five different areas across the map and  cumulating together in one moment on the corner of Bush and Olsen. 

Sophomore pitcher Wyatt Tucker picked up his first career start in a maroon and white uniform. The Douglass native accumulated two strikeouts, four flyouts and six groundouts in the four innings he pitched.

“[Tucker] gave us a chance and left the game 4-2,” A&M coach Jim Schlossnagle said. “Maybe he can build on this performance if we decide to put him in next week.”

After a silent first two innings from the box, it took one of the seniors to spark a flame in the A&M dugout. Senior left fielder Dylan Rock hit a two-run bomb to left field to bring the deficit to two with six innings left to play.

This marked the UTSA transfer’s 13th home run of the season, now the home run leader for the Aggies.

Freshman pitcher Chris Cortez came in to relieve Tucker in the bottom of the fifth and pitch lights out from the mound. Cortez put together back-to-back shutout innings in the sixth and the seventh and only gave up one run in the five innings he pitched. 

Cortez has been known to throw hard fastballs, including one that hit 99 mph, and now he can add a breaking ball to his arsenal.

“All these teams know I throw hard and sit fastballs,” Cortez said. “I didn’t really have anything to throw this whole year. I got something else to show, and they can’t sit fastball anymore.”

With the game tied at six in the bottom of the eighth, sophomore second baseman Ryan Targac hit one over the third baseman’s head and into left field to secure an RBI double and the series win. 

Senior shortstop Kole Kaler had three runs and a single in the 9-6 win against the Bulldogs. The Hawaii transfer is now tied for second on the team with junior right fielder Brett Minnich in runs for the season with 41.

Senior catcher Troy Claunch hit 2-for-4 from the batter’s box in Game 2 with two singles and a run scored. 

The remaining two seniors in pitcher Jacob Palisch and catcher Bailey Deramus, despite the latter not seeing the field, have made a significant impact on the now 31-16 No. 16 ranked A&M powerhouse.

The first pitch of Game 3 will be thrown at 12:02 p.m. on Olsen Field on May 15.

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