LSU uses late rally to storm by Texas A&M; Tigers take 2-0 series lead
BATON ROUGE, La. -- Down 5-2 through six innings, top-ranked LSU scored seven unanswered runs in the seventh and eighth innings to defeat No. 3 Texas A&M 9-6 on Friday night in front of more than 12,000 fans at Alex Box Stadium, Skip Bertman Field.
LSU, which posted a 4-3 win in Game 1 of the series on Thursday night, improved to 37-6 and 14-5 in the SEC, while Texas A&M dropped to 36-7 overall and 12-7 in league play.
“It was a another tremendous night for college baseball,” LSU coach Paul Mainieri said. “Two outstanding teams performing in front of a huge crowd in an electric atmosphere. I’m extremely proud of our guys for the effort in making a great comeback."
The Tigers went into the seventh inning with a three-run deficit and Aggie starting pitcher Ryan Hendrix throwing his best stuff. That changed in the bottom half of the inning as LSU scored four runs to take the lead.
Chris Chinea and Jake Fraley led off the inning with back-to-back singles. Jared Foster singled through the left side to score Chinea and get Fraley to third. Chris Sciambra followed with a perfectly placed safety squeeze to score Fraley.
Relief pitcher Mark Ecker entered the game with one out and Alex Bregman at the plate. Bregman and Ecker battled to a 3-2 count and the shortstop doubled down the left field line to push LSU to a 6-5 lead.
LSU didn’t let up in the bottom of the eighth inning as the Tigers added three more runs. Stevenson hit a one-out single up the middle and flew from first to home on a double to left field by Chinea. The Aggies brought in reliever Blake Kopetsky, but LSU pushed two more runs across the plate on a triple by Fraley and a groundout by Foster.
LSU reliever Russell Reynolds improved to 4-0 on the year after entering the game in the sixth inning and allowing just two hits in 1.2 innings of work. Hunter Newman earned his third save in his past three appearances after working two innings and allowing one run with no walks and one strikeout.
LSU starter Alex Lange worked 5.1 innings and was charged with five runs -- four earned -- on eight hits with five walks and seven strikeouts.