Texas A&M rallies from five-run deficit to cap two-game sweep vs. No. 6 Ole Miss
OXFORD, Miss. -- Texas A&M erased a five-run first-inning deficit en route to 10-6 win against No. 6 Ole Miss at Swayze Field. The victory gave the Aggies a sweep of Sunday’s doubleheader and an away-series win on A&M’s first road trip as a member of the SEC.
The A&M comeback was keyed by multiple runs in the second, fifth and sixth innings. The Aggies’ offensive arsenal included five extra-base hits and four sacrifice bunts, including three squeeze bunts.
Trailing 5-0, the Aggies began chipping away in the top of the second inning. Cole Lankford roped a double into left-center field to lead off the inning and with one out, Troy Stein plated him with a triple off the right-center field wall. Brandon Wood laid down a suicide squeeze bunt to knock Stein in, cutting the lead to 5-2.
A&M tied the game at five with three runs in the top of the fifth. Stein reached on a leadoff walk and Wood followed with an infield single to knock Ole Miss starter Sam Smith out of the game. Charlie Curl loaded the bases with a bunt single off reliever Tanner Bailey. Mikey Reynolds chipped a single into shallow center field to knock in Stein. Krey Bratsen plated Wood with a sacrifice fly to center field and Blake Allemand sent Curl home with the equalizer on a squeeze bunt.
The Aggies added to the scoreboard with four more runs in the sixth. Lankford singled through the right side of the infield to start the inning. With one out, Stein bounced a single back up the middle and Brandon Wood gave A&M its first lead of the game, rattling a double into the corner down the left field line to drive in Lankford. Curl reached first when the Rebels were unsuccessful trying to tag Stein at home on a squeeze bunt, giving A&M a 7-5 edge. After Reynolds was intentionally walked, Bratsen fell behind 0-2, but drew a 10-pitch walk to send Wood home. Allemand capped off the rally with a single to center field, scoring Curl.
A&M capped off the spurt of runs with a score in the seventh. With two outs, Stein singled to left field and Wood followed with an RBI double down the left field line for the 10-5 lead.
The Rebels scored an inconsequential run in the bottom of the seventh. With one out, Austin Anderson singled to left-center field and with two outs, Andrew Mistone drew a walk. Pinch-hitter Holt Perdzock plated Anderson with a single, to trim the lead to 10-6. Will Allen ended the game as he struck out looking on an 0-2 count.
Ole Miss drove Aggie starter Jason Freeman from the contest quickly. With one out in the first, Auston Bousfield drew a walk and stole second base. Anderson broke the scoring seal with an RBI single to left center field. Stuart Turner was issued a base on balls to put two runners on and Freeman was relieved by Parker Ray. Mistone hit a first-pitch offering through the left side of the infield to send Anderson home for the 2-0 lead. After a pop-up by Sikes Orvis accounted for the second out, Allen drew a walk to load the bases. Will Jamison plated two runs with a single to left field and a throwing error allowed Allen to score for the 5-0 lead.
Matt Kent (2-1) entered the game in the second inning for the Aggies and worked five scoreless innings of relief to earn the win. He scattered three hits and one walk while striking out three.
Chris Ellis (1-1) suffered the loss for Ole Miss. He allowed four runs on three hits and two walks while striking out one in one inning.
Wood, who entered the game without a hit in 12 at-bats in 2013, went 3-for-3 with two doubles, two runs, one sac bunt and three RBIs. Stein went 3-for-3 with one walk, four runs and an RBI. Bratsen and Allemand each knocked in two runs.
In the first game of the day, Texas A&M's Mitchell Nau platted a pair of early runs as the Aggies held on for a 2-1 win. Daniel Mengden gave up only one run in 5.2 innings in the win.