COLLEGE STATION, Texas - The No. 8 Texas A&M baseball team made it a perfect 4-0 start to its 2011 campaign on Tuesday when the Aggies defeated Prairie View A&M 11-1 in front of 2,830 fans at Olsen Field.
Texas A&M batters cranked out 12 hits on the night and collected seven stolen bases on eight attempts. For the Aggies, junior designated hitter Matt Juengel was again a force at the plate, going 2-for-4 with four runs batted in to give him a team-high 11 RBI in just four games this season. Junior second baseman Scott Arthur joined a group of four A&M hitters to record multi-hit games Tuesday, finishing 2-for-3 with a team-best three runs scored.
"We had a good day offensively," head coach Rob Childress said. "I felt like we gave away some at-bats later in the game but we started really fast and were able to send eight guys to the plate in the first inning. Dylan Mendoza was outstanding tonight and out of the 11 runs we scored, eight of them were with two outs, so we were getting a lot of big hits."
In addition to the solid offensive night, Texas A&M got its fourth consecutive quality start on the mound as sophomore lefty Dylan Mendoza (1-0) tossed six innings, yielding just one run on seven hits while striking out five and walking one.
For the second straight contest, the Aggies were able to jump all over their opponent during their first turn at the plate. Back-to-back hits from outfielders Krey Bratsen and Tyler Naquin to lead off the inning got the Aggies rolling in the first. Juengel and junior first baseman Jacob House cashed in with the runners in scoring position, using a sacrifice fly and RBI single in the next two at bats to plate the first two runs of the game.
Senior third baseman Andrew Collazo added a two-run double down the left field line later in the inning to help the Aggies hang a four-spot on the board. The Paterson, N.J., native finished the night 2-for-5 with the two RBI and a game-high two steals.
Two more runs came in during the bottom of the second when the Aggies, led by catcher Gregg Alcazar who had an RBI single during the frame, capitalized on a trio of Panther errors.
The Aggies made the score 8-0 in the home half of the third inning when Collazo swiped home on a double steal and Juengel knocked home a run with a single through the left side of the infield.
Prairie View A&M was finally able to make a mark on the scoreboard in the top of the fourth when Panther third baseman James Rodriguez plated a run with an RBI ground out. The run snapped an amazing streak by Aggie starting pitchers, who had not allowed an earned run in the first 21.2 innings of the season.
Juengel capped his standout night at the plate with a two-run base knock in the bottom of the fifth. Later Naquin put the final A&M tally on the board with a run-scoring single during the seventh inning.
Texas A&M's bullpen was again fantastic as relievers Nick Fleece, Estevan Uriegas and Ross Stripling each contributed a scoreless inning of work and allowed just a single Panther base runner during the game's final three frames.
The Aggies are back in action on Olsen Field this weekend when they entertain Gonzaga in a three-game series. The opener against the Bulldogs will get underway at 6:35 p.m. Friday with the series continuing Saturday at 2:05 p.m. and concluding on Sunday with the finale at 12:05 p.m.
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