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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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November’s ins and outs of A&M Athletics

Photo by Ishika Samant

Freshman RB LJ Johnson Jr. (34) rushes for one yard to score the first touchdown of Texas A&M’s game against Miami at Kyle Field on Saturday, Sept. 17, 2022.

November was a busy month for Texas A&M Athletics, as the Aggies saw the conclusion of some seasons, the beginning of others and the changing of the guard for a multitude of coaching positions. With players declaring for the transfer portal and new, top recruits announcing their intentions toward Aggieland, let’s look at who is in and who is out of A&M’s athletic programs.
On Nov. 26, the Aggies took down a fifth-ranked LSU team at home in Kyle Field, marking the end of the season for the maroon and white who are not bowl-eligible. With the conclusion of the season, a few Aggies declared their intentions to enter the transfer portal.
Junior wide receiver Chase Lane was among the most tenured of the Aggies’ wideouts in 2022. Lane appeared in eight games this season, catching seven passes for 76 yards. The former three-star recruit, according to 247Sports, entered the transfer portal with two more seasons of eligibility. Lane will be joined by junior kicker Caden Davis, who took to Twitter to announce his decision to enter the portal on Nov. 28. Davis opened the season as the Aggies’ starting kicker before sophomore Randy Bond took over, being relegated to a long-range field goal and kickoff specialist.
Freshman linebacker Ish Harris, a former four-star recruit, announced his intention to enter the portal after playing zero snaps in his freshman season. Other Aggies who declared included redshirt freshman running back LJ Johnson Jr. and redshirt freshman defensive lineman Elijah Jeudy, both former four-star recruits.
Earlier in the month, Anthony Hill decommitted from A&M after being committed since July of 2022. The Denton-Ryan product is the No. 1-ranked linebacker in the Class of 2023, according to 247Sports, and reopened his recruitment process before February’s signing day.
Also on his way out is A&M offensive coordinator Darrell Dickey, who was let go from the program, according to a press release on Nov. 28. This opens the way for the Aggies to bring in a potential new play-caller and change the shape of the offense going forward with multiple young, budding stars. For more information on Dickey’s release, read The Battalion’s story on the situation.
Lastly, with the 2022 season closing, many Aggie football seniors and graduates will be on their way out, including graduate defensive back Myles Jones and graduate deep snapper Connor Choate, the team’s 12th Man for both the 2021 and 2022 seasons.
A&M volleyball head coach Laura “Bird” Kuhn was relieved of her duties as the team’s leader after spending five seasons at the helm, the university announced on Monday, Nov. 21, in a statement.
The Aggies went 76-60 under Kuhn but failed to achieve a winning record in overall or conference play in each of the last three seasons.
Aggie volleyball also hosted its senior night on Nov. 16, honoring several team members. Among the graduates honored were graduate libero Allison Fields, who was named to the SEC’s Community Service Team, graduate setter Elena Karakasi, redshirt junior middle blocker Madison Bowser, senior outside hitter and opposite hitter Destiny Cox and senior outside hitter Ciera Hecht. For more information on Hecht, read The Battalion’s story on the graduating senior.
While A&M soccer’s senior day was on Oct. 23, the season extended into November after the Aggies were selected for the NCAA Tournament. In the first round, the squad faced off against a long-time rival, Texas, falling to the Longhorns in Austin. The Aggies will be graduating six athletes after a long 2022 season.
Among the players leaving will be senior goalkeeper Kenna Caldwell, senior defender Katie Smith, senior forward and midfielder Jai Smith, senior forward Ali Russell, who was named to the SEC’s Community Service Team, and junior Natalie Yoo. Graduate defender Karlina Sample also finished her career in Aggieland.
The Aggies were able to ink several young players on Nov. 9, as the seniors of the Class of 2023 signed their National Letters of Intent. Six Texas athletes were signed: defender and midfielder Adysen Armenta and midfielder Reese Rupe, both from Spring, midfielder Ella Goodwin, who attended A&M Consolidated, defender Bella James from Frisco, forward Taylor Jernigan from San Antonio and defender Margo Matula from Houston. Armenta, Rupe and Goodwin all competed on the same club team. The Aggies also signed one athlete from out of state, midfielder Grace Ivey from St. Johns, Fla., the reigning Gatorade Florida High School Player of the Year.
Armenta, James, Jernigan, Matula and Rupe will all be joining A&M as early enrollees; Matula will be joining her older sister Macy Matula, who is currently a sophomore defender with the program. Rupe’s mother Bryn Rupe, then named Bryn Blalack, was a two-time All-American with the Aggies as well.
Even with the season just starting, there was still some recruiting news for the Aggies in basketball. The men’s team signed a guard from Baltimore, Bryce Lindsay, who will join the Aggies next season. The women’s team signed three players, including Texas’ top recruit.
Lindsay chose A&M over other major programs like Villanova, West Virginia and South Carolina. He was ranked a four-star recruit by, who ranked him as the No. 102 prospect in the Class of 2022. He’s spending a postgraduate season at IMG Academy in Florida before coming to Aggieland.
Three four-star guards signed with head coach Joni Taylor’s Aggies, including the top prospect in the state of Texas, according to ESPN, Kylie Marshall. Ranked 35th in the nation, Marshall comes from Mansfield and is the first No. 1 player from Texas to commit to the A&M women’s basketball team. The Aggies also signed the No. 51 prospect in the nation, Sole Williams, from Cincinnati and the No. 76 player Erica Moon from Atlanta. Williams earned All-Ohio First Team honors and Moon earned All-Georgia Second Team.
Both men’s and women’s golf at A&M managed to land recruits in the Class of 2023’s signing class. The women’s team signed two prospects and the men’s team signed three.
A&M signed the No. 25-ranked amateur golfer in the world, Cayetana Fernández García-Poggio, according to the World Amateur Golf Ranking, and the 18th-ranked American, Sky Sudberry, according to the Rolex American Junior Golf Association rankings, or AJGA. Coming from Madrid, Fernández García-Poggio was a top-ranked international prospect and is the younger sister of current Aggie golfer and All-American Blanca Fernández García-Poggio; Sudberry, coming from The Woodlands, was the third-ranked golfer in the state of Texas.
The men’s side signed a trio of golfers from The Woodlands, where they won consecutive state titles. According to the AJGA, Jack Usner is a top-75 prospect, Jake Maggert is a top-50 prospect and Aaron Pounds is a top-20 prospect in the Class of 2023. Maggert’s father, Jeff, played golf at A&M, and Pounds’ sisters, Haley and Taylor, played soccer for the maroon and white. Taylor is currently a junior midfielder for the program.
November’s signing day also brought young talent to A&M’s natatorium, with the men’s team signing four athletes that head coach Jay Holmes said could bring an immediate impact to the squad.
Roberto Bonilla comes from Spring where he competed in the breaststroke, butterfly and individual medley. He also competes internationally for Guatemala. Logan Brown from Sugar Land competed in the breaststroke and individual medley, winning a state title and setting the state record in the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 53.39 as a junior. He’s the No. 11 prospect in the nation according to
Ben Scholl is from Cypress where he competed in the freestyle and the butterfly, winning a state title in the 50-yard freestyle as a senior. He is ranked No. 14 in the nation. Lastly, Brendan Studdert comes from Kingwood where he competed in the individual medley.
Three tennis recruits signed with the Aggies in the high school recruiting class on the men’s team, all coming from within Texas: Brayden Michna from Taylor, Ritesh Patil from Houston and Lathan Skrobarcek from Helotes. Michna and Patil were both ranked as five-star recruits, and Skrobarcek was a four-star recruit.
Under new management in 2023, head coach Trisha Ford from Arizona State is bringing in four prospects from the high school Class of 2023 to A&M’s revamped softball program, three of which come from in-state.
Hailey Golden is an outfielder from Pearland, where she earned First-Team All-State honors, and is the 55th-ranked prospect according to Extra Inning Elite’s top-100 list. Avery “Scout” Lovell is the No. 71 prospect and played shortstop at Lovelady where she was a two-sport athlete at the 2A level.
The top-rated recruit for A&M came from out of state when the Aggies landed Mya Perez, a first baseman and right-handed pitcher from Norco, Calif., the No. 7 prospect in the nation. Perez has earned All-State and All-American honors at Norco High School and batted a .676 average as a junior. The Aggies also landed the No. 14 prospect, Reagan Jones, an in-state prospect who played infielder at Alvin.

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  • Aggies talk to head coach Laura “Bird” Kuhn during game at Reed Arena on Friday, Sep. 9, 2022.

    Photo by Kalena Agpasan
  • Senior GK Kenna Caldwell (0), senior D Katie Smith (7) and senior M Natalie Yoo (11) during Senior Night celebrations before A&M’s match against Mizzou at Ellis Field on Sunday, Oct. 23, 2022.

    Photo by Cameron Johnson
  • Senior G Andre Gordon (20) moves towards the paint during Texas A&M’s game against ACU at Reed Arena on Friday, Nov. 11, 2022.

  • Senior Blanca Fernández García-Poggio plays her tee shot on the 10th hole of the Traditions Club on the second day of the “Mo”morial Invitational on Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022 in Bryan, Texas.

  • University of Houston performs the backstoke during A&M’s meet against Houston at the Student Recreation Center Natatorium on Thursday, Oct. 6, 2022.

    Photo by Kalena Agpasan
  • Freshman Giulio Perego during his match against Chih Chi Huang from the University of Texas at the Mitchell Tennis Center on Wednesday, Mar. 9, 2022.

  • Sophomore P/OF Grace Uribe (8) hits a ball during the bottom of the second inning in Davis Diamond on Wednesday, April 27, 2022.

  • Junior WR Chase Lane (2) takes a selfie with a fan after A&M defeated LSU 38-23 at Kyle Field on Saturday, Nov. 26, 2022. (Jonathan Taffet/The Battalion)

    Photo by Jonathan Taffet
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