Aggies Pitch Way to Series-Opening Win

MANHATTAN, Kan. Kansas State held a 2-0 lead after seven innings, but Texas A&M scored four times in the eighth inning and turned the two-run deficit into a two-run win as the 15th-ranked Aggies defeated the Wildcats, 4-2, Friday afternoon in the first game of a day-night doubleheader at Tointon Family Stadium.

 

With the loss, Kansas State fell to 24-9 overall and 5-5 in Big 12 play, while Texas A&M improved to 21-12 overall and 8-5 in conference action.

 

The Aggie offense, which had produced only three hits through seven innings, exploded in the eighth with four hits to erase the 2-0 deficit. Texas A&M scored its first three runs without recording an out. Kevin Gonzalez led off the inning with a double, which would be the end for K-State pitcher Lance Hoge.

 

James Allen (1-1) came on in relief and surrendered an infield single, a RBI single and a two-run double to give the Aggies a 3-2 lead. Following a strikeout, Kyle Colligan hit a RBI groundout to cap the scoring.

 

Texas A&M starter Brooks Raley (6-1) was phenomenal as the left-hander threw his first complete game of the season, allowing two runs on just three hits with one walk and 11 strikeouts. Raley was able to hold Kansas State to its lowest hit-output of the season. Adam Muenster led off with a single in the first inning, and the Cats didn’t get another hit until Jason King doubled in seventh.

 

Hoge had nothing to show for a brilliant outing as the senior threw a season-high seven innings, surrendering one run on four hits with four strikeouts.

 

Gonzalez and Brodie Greene each recorded two hits for the Aggies, while Joe Patterson drove in two runs.

 

Texas A&M had a chance to score in the third frame when Greene led off the inning with a triple to right-center field. However, Hoge struck out the next two batters and forced a fly out to end the threat.

 

Hoge also benefited from a pair of double plays in both the fourth and the fifth innings to keep the game scoreless.

 

Kansas State scored the game’s first run in the fifth inning in unconventional fashion. King was hit by a pitch with one out, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and then stole third base. With Daniel Dellasega at first after walking and Dane Yelovich at the plate, Dellasega broke for second base on a 0-2 count and was able to stay in a rundown long enough for King to score.

 

K-State came back in the seventh inning with another run when King doubled into left field to score Drew Biery from first, giving the Cats a 2-0 lead.

 

The second game of the day-night doubleheader between Kansas State and Texas A&M is set for a 6:30 p.m., first pitch on Friday. The two teams conclude their weekend series with a 2 p.m., first pitch on Saturday at Tointon Family Stadium.