COLLEGE STATION -- Rice used a six-run fifth to open up a close game and lift the seventh-ranked Owls to an 11-2 victory over No. 8 Texas A&M Tuesday night before 5,570 fans at Olsen Field.
The loss ended a 13-game win streak for the Aggies, who fell to 30-7. Rice won its eighth straight and moved to 28-10.
“You’ve got to give Rice credit,” A&M coach Rob Childress said. “Mike Ojala pitched a great game, and they took advantage of every mistake we made. One team showed up ready to play tonight, and one team showed up and was just okay. We’ve got to come out and try to get better tomorrow and focus on Baylor this weekend.”
Both teams hit solo home runs in the first inning, as the Owls’ Jared Gayhart led off the contest with his third long ball of the year. Aggie second baseman Blake Stouffer answered with a one-out blast to right, his fourth of the season.
Rice would tack on three more off A&M starter Scott Migl in the third, as cleanup hitter Aaron Luna sent a one-out, three-run shot over the fence in left to make the score 4-1.
The Owls pushed their lead to nine with a six-run fifth. Aggie pitching walked three batters and hit one in the frame, all of which came around to score. Catcher Adam Zornes’ three-run double to right center and a two-run single by pinch-hitter Derek Myers accounted for most of the damage.
Kyle Colligan hit his fourth home run of the season, a solo shot to left, leading off the eighth.
Migl (2-2) suffered the loss, allowing six hits and six runs (five earned) while walking one and fanning five.
Ojala improved to 3-0, going six innings and allowing four hits, one run and one walk while striking out six.
Texas A&M returns to Big 12 play this weekend when the Aggies face Baylor in a split series. Friday’s game will be played at Olsen Field with first pitch set for 6:30 p.m. The series then moves to Waco and Baylor Ballpark, as Saturday’s game will begin at 6:30 p.m. and Sunday’s series finale at 2 p.m.
TEXAS A&M POSTGAME NOTES:
• The 5,570 in attendance marked the largest non-conference regular-season crowd at Olsen Field since April 5, 2005 (5,575 vs Sam Houston State).
• Blake Stouffer extended his hit streak to 13 games, a new career high, with his first inning home run.
• Jose Duran extended his hit streak to seven games.
• The loss snapped a 23-game, mid-week non-conference win streak for A&M…the last team to beat the Aggies in a mid-week contest was Houston on April 19, 2006.
• Rice’s 11-run output was the most by an Aggie opponent this season.
• Texas A&M fell to 1-1 on the year against ranked opponents.
• Texas A&M now leads the all-time series, 175-89-2…Rice has won the last five meetings at Olsen Field.
• Game-time temperature was 76 degrees with clear skies and winds blowing out to left center at seven miles per hour.