Jayhawks Fall to No. 6 Texas A&M in 10 Innings
March 25, 2011
COLLEGE STATION, Texas -
Texas A&M pinch hitter Troy Stein’s RBI single in the bottom of the 10th lifted the sixth-ranked Aggies to a 2-1 triumph over KU Friday evening in front of a packed house at Olsen Field.
The Jayhawks snap a three-game winning streak and fall to 10-11 overall and 2-2 in the Big 12. The Aggies win their fourth-straight and improve to 17-5 overall and 3-1 in conference play. It marked KU’s third extra-inning loss this season.
Kansas went toe-to-toe with the No. 6 team in the country Friday night and came up just short.
In the bottom of the 10th, Texas A&M got a leadoff single by second baseman Charlie Curl and after a sacrifice, a walk and a hit batsman to load the bases. That set the stage for Stein, who drove a 1-2 pitch over a drawn in outfield to win the game.
The Jayhawk bats were stymied most of the night, but tied the score at 1-1 in the ninth off Aggie closer Joaquin Hinojosa. Pinch hitter Alex DeLeon recorded a two-out, two-strike double to tie the game. After Hinojosa retired the first two hitters, Chris Manship kept the inning alive with an infield single off the pitcher. Pinch runner Kevin Kuntz moved to second on a passed ball and came around to score the tying run on DeLeon’s double.
KU nearly took the lead in the fifth inning, but a controversial interference call kept them off the board. With Texas A&M leading 1-0, the Jayhawks loaded the bases with one out for left fielder Jimmy Waters. Waters hit a ground ball up the middle that A&M second baseman Curl flipped the ball to shortstop Kenny Jackson to force Casey Lytle at second, but Jackson’s relay throw to first sailed high.
However, umpire Wes Hamilton ruled that Lytle interfered with the play and called Waters out at first. The call killed the rally and kept the Jayhawks scoreless in the inning.
Kansas starting pitcher T.J. Walz pitched one of his best games, but took a no decision. Walz went 7 2/3 innings and allowed one run on four hits with a walk and matched a season high with 10 strikeouts. The senior righty allowed just one hit after the third inning.
KU reliever Frank Duncan suffered his first loss. Duncan entered Friday, having not allowed a run in his first 11 1/3 innings on the mound.
The Jayhawks’ offense outhit the Aggies, 11-6, but couldn’t get the big hit when it mattered, stranding 11 runners on base.
KU will look to even the series Saturday when the face Texas A&M at 2:05 p.m. at Olsen Field.