COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The No. 8 Texas A&M Aggies used a five-run sixth inning to disorient Northwestern State in a 6-1 victory over the Demons Tuesday evening on Olsen Field at Blue Bell Park.
The decisive frame was highlighted by a tie-breaking double by Michael Helman and a three-run two-bagger by Will Frizzell.
Helman ended the day going 2-for-4 with one double, one run and one RBI. Braden Shewmake was 2-for-4 with one run and one RBI.
Aggie pitchers combined on 13 strikeouts without yielding a walk. Chandler Jozwiak started the game, surrendering just one run on five hits while striking out eight in 5.0 innings. Nolan Hoffman (3-0) earned the win, scattering three hits while striking out five in 3.0 shutout innings. Chris Andritsos made his first appearance on the mound for the Aggies, facing four batters in a scoreless ninth.
The Aggies improved to 12-1 on the season. Northwestern State saw its mark drop to 7-5.
T3 | Sam Taylor reached on a single to short to start the frame. Taylor moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and came around to score with two outs as David Fry hit a ground-rule double to right field. NSU 1, A&M 0.
B5| Logan Foster laced a single through the right side of the infield to get things rolling. Will Frizzell was hit by a pitch and Baine Schoenvogel put down a sacrifice bunt to push both runners into scoring position. Aaron Walters hit a slow roller to second base, knocking in Foster for the equalizer on the groundout. NSU 1, A&M 0.
B6 | Zach DeLoach drew a four-pitch leadoff walk and moved to second on a balk. Helman roped a double down the leftfield line, knocking in the go-ahead run. Shewmake followed with a gapper to left-center, scoring Helman and knocking Northwestern State starter Jerry Maddox (0-2) out of the contest. An error on a grounder by Hunter Coleman put runners on the corners and Foster drew a four-pitch walk to fill the bags with Ags. Frizzell delivered the final blow of the inning, knocking a double over the centerfielder to clear the bases with a three-run double. A&M 6, NSU 1.
The Aggies and Demons battle again Wednesday with first pitch at 3:02 p.m.
TEXAS A&M QUOTES
Head Coach Rob Childress
On the game…
“You got to make those hits matter when you don’t get a lot of them, we certainly did that tonight. Their starting pitcher was outstanding and retired the first 11 in a row and had all four pitches working. Just really good, we are very fortunate to keep the game close. Chandler Jozwiak was really good, we played great defense behind him, and (Nolan) Hoffman gave them the hold once we had the lead.”
On being fooled by the off-speed pitches…
“I mean the curveball was between 62-64 (from NSU starter pitcher Jerry Maddox) and there is not a whole lot you can do with that. You know that a 90-92 fastball look like 95-97 to our hitters, he did a really nice job throwing that pitch for a strike and using the fastball to truly get the outs.”
On getting that first man on to score…
“Yeah, give our guys credit for keeping the game close and just staying in the moment, not squeezing too tight not playing nervous. We just got our shot and made it happen.”
Freshman LHP Chandler Jozwiak
On what it was like coming back off of the Saturday's short start…
“Coming back, I mean same as the time before, as I did that. I just trusted my stuff going out there and just throwing strikes and going right after them, and not being picky with my pitches and just making them earn it if they were going to get a hit.”
On building confidence with early strikeouts…
“As long as I can get ahead early, start ahead and fill it up, I know I can get them out with that strikeout and that slider. That is our plan the whole time.”
On batters seeing the ball better the second time through...
“Yeah I don’t think they saw much of it, I think I just missed a few spot here and there, and that was the main part. I think it was just that one pitch, I missed the spot and I paid for it and I learned from that.”
Freshman 1B Will Frizzell
On the bats coming around…
“It felt good to just get the bats going after the fourth, back to the approach. We finished the game the way we finished the weekend.”
On the three-run double...
“Going in, he (Danny Hlad) had just walked Logan (Foster) on four pitches so the fans had the chant going. I had the green light was just looking dead-red fastball trying to get the at bat that Logan had set up.”
Junior RHP Nolan Hoffman
On working long in relief…
“It’s nice to back up the starters like we have been. We have a lot of guys in the bullpen that can do it so I’m just happy I can contribute.”
On keeping the ball down…
“I didn’t feel great in the bullpen so when I came on I just had to focus on staying down in my slot and just throwing it. I had my fastball working and the slider was pretty good today too. It’s nice to have both.”
On the high strikeout numbers…
“I don’t try to get strikeouts but with the defense that we have I just try to pitch to contact and strikeouts just happen when they do.”