Aggies Eliminated from SEC Tournament
HOOVER, Alabama – The Texas A&M Aggies had their first-ever trip to the SEC Tournament ended on Friday evening, losing a 3-0 decision to the No. 1 Vanderbilt Commodores in an elimination game at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium.
Texas A&M (32-27) went 2-2 at the tournament, winning the first two games against Florida and Vanderbilt before losing to Mississippi State on Thursday.
Vanderbilt (50-8) jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the third inning. Tony Kemp bounced a leadoff single up the middle to start the frame. Xavier Turner appeared to fly out for the first out of the inning, but starter Grayson Long’s stop in his motion was deemed to not be discernible enough, sending Kemp to second base on a balk. After a wild pitch put Kemp on third, Turner used his second life to drive a double to leftfield, sending Kemp home for the 1-0 lead. A bunt single by Yastrzemski put runners on the corners and Connor Harrell hit a sacrifice fly to centerfield, knocking in Turner for the 2-0 lead.
The Commodores added an insurance run in the top of the fifth. Yastrzemski laced a leadoff single through the right side of the infield and was replaced at first base by Harrell who bounced into a fielder’s choice. After Conrad Gregor struck out swinging for the second out of the inning, Zander Wiel and Rhett Wiseman put together back-to-back singles to send Harrell for the 3-0 advantage.
The Aggies had their best chance to score in the seventh when Troy Stein hit a leadoff double down the leftfield line and moved to third base when Hunter Melton hit a deep shot to rightfield for a flyout. But Stein was stranded at third with a strikeout by Daniel Mengden and a flyout to centerfield by Chance Bolcerek.
Long (4-2) was saddled with the loss for the Aggies. He allowed two runs on seven hits while striking out one over 2.1 innings. Matt Kent worked 2.1 innings, yielding one run on three hits while striking out three. Kyle Martin pitched 1.1 scoreless innings with one hit.
Texas A&M played with fire most of the game, allowing the Vanderbilt leadoff batter to reach base in seven of the nine innings.
Tyler Beede (14-0) remained perfect on the year picking up the win behind 7.1 scoreless innings of work. He scattered two hits and four walks while striking out eight. Brian Miller retired all five batters he faced over 1.2 innings, including two strikeouts, to pick up his 15th save of the season.
The Aggies wait to receive word on a bid to the NCAA Division I Baseball Tournament. The NCAA will announce the 64-team NCAA Tournament bracket Monday, May 27 at 11 a.m. CT on ESPNU's Road to Omaha Show. Texas A&M has received bids the last six seasons, a school-record string of success.