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Missouri Holds Off Texas A&M
May 20, 2009
OKLAHOMA CITY No. 3 seed Missouri held off a late comeback attempt from No. 6 Texas A&M Wednesday evening to earn a 5-2 win in the third game of the Big 12 Baseball Championship at AT&T Bricktown Ballpark.

Missouri scored consistently throughout the game and held Texas A&M to eight scoreless innings to earn the win and improve to 33-23 on the year.

The Tigers jumped on top early in the game, scoring in the bottom of the first when Greg Folgia hit a deep sacrifice fly to left field and scored Austin Holt.

After a scoreless second inning, Missouri added to their lead in the bottom of the third. Folgia again hit a deep sacrifice fly, this time scoring Ryan Lollis, who reached third the prior at bat by hitting a triple to left center.

Missouri tacked on two more runs in the following inning. Kyle Mach led off the bottom of the fourth with a double to left center, which was followed by a two-run homerun from Steve Gray.

The score stayed at 4-0, in favor of Missouri, until the bottom of the sixth, when the Tigers scored their final run of the game to make it 5-0. The run came after a Texas A&M error allowed MU’s Ryan Ampleman to advance to third. Ampleman scored the unearned run on a fielder’s choice the next at bat.

Missouri held on to its 5-0 lead until the top of the ninth, when the Aggies began a late rally. After Caleb Shofner fouled out to the first baseman, Texas A&M capitalized on Missouri mistakes to tighten the score.

Kevin Gonzalez followed Shofner with a walk on four straight pitches. Adam Smith then doubled to left field, advancing Gonzalez to third. The Aggies scored their first run of the game on an error from Alleman’s ground ball, allowing Gonzalez to score and Smith to advance to third.

Texas A&M closed the gap further after a wild pitch, scoring Smith and moving Alleman to second. Brodie Greene walked on the following at bat, bringing the tying run to the plate with one out. Brooks Raley reached first on a fielder’s choice, and Greene was forced out at second.

With one out remaining in the game, Missouri pitcher Nick Tepesch got Luke Anders to ground out to third, cutting the Aggie rally short and giving the Tigers the 5-2 decision.

Missouri starter Kyle Gibson, who allowed just three hits in six innings of work, earned the win to improve to 10-3 on the year, while Texas A&M starter Clayton Ehlert took his first loss of the season to drop to 5-1.

The Tigers and the Aggies return to action on Friday for their second pool play games of the Big 12 Baseball Championship, with Missouri facing No. 7 seeded Texas Tech at 3 p.m. and Texas A&M pairing with No. 2 Oklahoma at 7:30 p.m.

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