HOUSTON, Texas – Tyler Stubblefield threw his first career complete game to lead Texas A&M to a 3-2 victory over Texas in the 2014 NCAA Baseball Tournament Houston Regional. The win by the Aggies forces a rematch with Texas on Monday for a berth in the Super Regional.
Stubblefield allowed just four hits and two earned runs to the Longhorns in a career-high nine innings pitched, matching his career-high with nine strikeouts. Stubblefield picked up the victory, moving his record to 4-2 on the season.
The Longhorns (40-19) drew first blood in the top of the second inning. CJ Hinojosa started the rally reaching on an infield single and he moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Collin Shaw. After Kacy Clemens flied out to centerfield for the second out of the inning, Ben Johnson sliced a double away from centerfielder Krey Bratsen into the right-center gap to plate Hinojosa for the 1-0 lead.
Texas A&M (36-25) bounced back with a rally in the home half of the second. Logan Nottebrok worked a seven-pitch walk to start the frame. With one out, Troy Stein hit a high chopper to third allowing Nottebrok to move to second on the groundout and Patrick McLendon hit a humpback liner to centerfield bring Nottebrok home with the equalizer.
Texas manufactured a run in the top of the third to reclaim the lead. With one out, Mark Payton snaked a single through the left side of the infield and stole second base. After Barrera flied to centerfield for the second out of the inning, Madison Carter punched a single into rightfield to drive in Payton for the 2-1 advantage.
The back-and-forth continued in the bottom of the fourth as the Aggies took advantage of a Longhorns error to tie the game at 2-2. With one out, Stein gapped a single to left-center and advanced to second on a wild pitch. McLendon grounded to third baseman Zane Gurwitz, but his throw sailed over the head of the first baseman allowing Stein to score. Travis Duke relieved Texas starter Lukas Schiraldi on the mound, walking Jace Statum but struck out Blake Allemand and Bratsen on three pitches apiece to get out of the inning.
The Aggies grabbed the lead for the first time in the contest with a fifth-inning rally. Ryne Birk stroked a single down the rightfield line to start the frame and advanced to second on a balk. After Cole Lankford flied to leftfield for the first out of the inning, Nottebrok flied to deep centerfield, allowing Birk to move to third. Nick Banks hammered a 1-0 offering to leftfield, scoring Birk with the go-ahead run, giving A&M a 3-2 advantage.
Schiraldi did not factor in the decision, working just 3.1 innings in the start. He allowed two runs, one earned, on four hits and four walks while striking out two.