COLLEGE STATION, Texas- Despite taking a 1-0 lead into the seventh inning, the 4th-ranked Texas A&M softball team (29-6, 3-3 in Big 12) could not hold on as it fell 3-1 to the 11th-ranked Baylor Lady Bears (35-9, 5-0 in Big 12) in eight innings on Wednesday night at the Aggie Softball Complex.
“Our kids came out and played well,” Texas A&M head coach Jo Evans said. “I thought (Amanda) Scarborough was as good as she could be. She was terrific, on her game tonight. She got some huge strikeouts when we needed them. We got a run in the first, which is a big deal, you get yourself up. We had our lead off batter on in the first four innings and just couldn’t score again. It’s a tough pill to swallow. I tip my hat to Baylor; they made a gutsy call in the seventh on the squeeze.”
A suicide squeeze bunt in the top of the seventh tied the game at one for Baylor. Ashley Monceaux doubled to begin the inning and quickly moved to third on a passed ball, one of four on the evening for the Aggies. With a 1-2 count, Alex Colyer executed a perfect bunt down the third baseline to bring Monceaux home.
With the game tied at one, in the eighth, Miriam Romero singled just over Scarborough’s head to start the inning. Tiffany Wesley followed suit with a single just inside the third base line. Wesley’s sister Nicole reached on a fielder’s choice, advancing to second on a passed ball, while Tiffany moved up to third. Tiffany would score the go-ahead run on yet another Aggie passed ball. Brette Reagan struck out but a dropped ball forced A&M catcher Beverly Rowan to throw to first, allowing Nicole to come home, making the score 3-1 in Baylor’s favor.
Sharonda McDonald extended her hitting streak to 21 games with a single in the first inning. She came around to score after Macie Morrow sacrificed her to second and Lady Bear catcher, Chelsi Lake allowed a ball to scoot by her, moving McDonald to third. Megan Gibson recorded her 25th RBI, fisting a single into shallow right field.
Though A&M managed six hits on the night, they were only 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position.
Scarborough pitched a no-hitter through five before giving up back-to-back singles in the sixth inning to Romero and Tiffany Wesley. Scarborough was able to strand the runners swaying Nicole Wesley to strikeout and Reagan and Lake to ground out.
“Mostly, I feel bad for Scarborough,” Evans ended. “She was so spot-on. She had a tough inning in the sixth, when they had two on and nobody out, but she got herself out of the jam. She did everything she needed to do. We should have walked away with a win tonight.”
Scarborough (14-4) was charged with the loss. The three Baylor runs that scored were unearned. She worked eight complete allowing five hits and one walk. She struck out 11 Lady Bear batters.
Lisa Ferguson remained strong in the circle for Baylor, picking up her 15th win of the season, working eight complete. The right-hander from Forth Worth allowed six hits and one unearned run, while striking out six A&M hitters. Ferguson’s only free pass came to McDonald in the fifth.
McDonald ended the evening going 2-for-3 with a run scored and a stolen base, her 27th of the season.
The Aggies return to action on Friday when they host Nebraska in a two-game series starting at 6 p.m. at the Aggie Softball Complex.