COLLEGE STATION, Texas- Luke Anders hit two, two-run homers and Texas A&M completed a series sweep over Kansas State with a 14-4, victory before 3,588 sun-splashed fans at Olsen Field on Sunday.
Anders two homeruns give him seven on the year. His first of the day came in the third inning and the second came with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning to reach the 10-run rule after seven innings on get-away day in the Big 12 Conference.
With the win, the 16th-ranked Aggies improved to 26-6 overall and remained in second place in the Big 12 at 9-3. K-State fell to 15-15 and 2-7.
The Wildcats started the scoring in the top of the first with a single run off of Aggie starter and winner Clayton Ehlert (4-2). It could have been more if not for a base running mistake. Jordan Cruz opened with a double and moved to third base on Adam Muenster’s single. Muenster ventured too far off of first base and was caught stealing for the first out of the frame. After Nate Tenbrink’s sacrifice fly brought home Cruz, Justin Bloxom and Jason King had back-to-back singles. Ehlert got out of the jam with a strikeout of Rob Vaughn.
A&M would answer in the bottom of the first as the top three hitters in the Aggie lineup reached base. Kyle Colligan started things with a single and Blake Stouffer followed with a single. Dane Carter had an RBI double before Wildcat starter and loser Lance Hoge (1-2) recorded his first out, a pop up by Jose Duran. Darby Brown would give the Aggies the lead for good with an RBI ground out plating Stouffer.
The Aggies would add to the lead as Brian Ruggiano opened the second inning with a single and came around to score on a sacrifice fly by Colligan.
A&M would add three more in the third inning chasing Hoge. Carter opened the inning with a base hit and Duran followed with a single to put runners at first and second. Brown would chase Hoge with an RBI single, but Duran was thrown out at third base. Anders greeted Wildcat relief pitcher A.J. Morris with a homer to right field.
Kansas State would cut into the lead with two runs off of Ehlert in the fourth inning. After two outs, Drew Biery singled followed by Brett Scott’s single. Leadoff batter Cruz doubled in the gap in rightfield but was thrown out at third base trying to stretch the hit into a triple.
The score would remain 6-3 through six innings and the Wildcats singled with one out in the top of the seventh to chase Ehlert. Aggie reliever Kyle Thebeau was greeted with an RBI double by Tenbrink to close the gap to 6-4. Thebeau got Bloxom to pop out and struck out King to end the inning. Thebeau finished off the game for the Aggies to earn his first save of the season.
The Aggies answered with a big inning in the bottom of the seventh. Carter started things with a single and following Duran’s fly out, Brown doubled to bring home Carter. A strikeout of Anders looked to minimize the damage, but Wildcat reliever Chase Bayuk walked Ruggiano and was lifted for Tyler Ruch. Ruch walked Ben Feltner to load the bases and followed with another walk to Kevin Gonzalez to force in a run. Colligan hit a grand slam homerun to left to complete the scoring in the seventh.
The Aggies closed out the Wildcats in the eighth as Duran singled with one out and after Brown flew out, Anders ended the day with a homer to right off of Todd Vogel, the fifth Wildcat pitcher of the afternoon.
Colligan and Carter each had three hits on the afternoon with Colligan recording five RBI.
The Aggies travel to Houston on Tuesday to face the Houston Cougars in a non-conference game while the Wildcats host Wichita State on Tuesday.
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