BRYAN-COLLEGE STATION, Texas - Hunter Haas hit a three-run home run in the bottom of the eighth inning and the Texas A&M Aggies held on for a 6-5 comeback win over Tarleton on Tuesday night at Blue Bell Park.
The Aggies (26-19) put an end to a five-game losing streak with the win, despite not holding a lead until Haas' sixth home run of the season off Texan (23-19) reliever Jake Burcham.
Tarleton had taken a 4-1 lead on the strength of two homers of their own - a solo blast from Dylan Choy Foo in the second and a three-run homer by Jack Wagner in the sixth. The Aggies stayed close with runs in the third and sixth before taking the lead, but still needed some ninth-inning heroics to close it out.
Down two runs with just two outs to play with, the Texans put together a rally, loading the bases with one out on a pair of singles and a walk. Mason Crews then scored a run on an infield single to draw Tarleton to within a run and keep the bases loaded.
The Aggies turned to Evan Aschenbeck out of the bullpen and the lefty threw just two pitches to finish it, getting pinch hitter Jordan Andrade to ground into a game-ending double play.
The twin killing converted his first save of the year and made a winner of Carson Lambert who struck out four in 2.1 frames. Burcham fell to 2-3 on the year for Tarleton with the loss.
Texas A&M got a solid start from freshman Justin Lamkin with 5.0 innings of one-hit work, striking out nine batters before walking the final two hitters he faced in the game, his only free passes of the night. The nine punchouts were the most by an Aggie freshman since Chris Weber's 10 strikeouts vs Arkansas in 2019.
TOP AGGIE PERFORMERS
Jordan Thompson - 2-for-2, 2 R, RBI, 2 BB
Hunter Haas - 1-for-3, 1 R, 3 RBI, HR, 2 BB
Justin Lamkin - 5.0 IP, 1 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 9 K
Carson Lambert (W, 2-1) - 2.1 IP, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K
T2 | TAR 1, A&M 0
The Texans took the early lead when Dylan Choy Foo slammed a solo home run out to left field with one out in the inning.
B3 | A&M 1, TAR 1
Texas A&M did not get a hit in the third but did enough to tie things up. Consecutive walks to Jordan Thompson and Hunter Haas put a pair of runners on base and they were loaded up when Jack Moss was hit by a pitch. Trevor Werner then lined a sacrifice fly into left field to score Thompson and even the score at 1-1.
T6 | TAR 4, A&M 1
Tarleton jumped back in front with another longball in the top of the sixth, taking advantage of consecutive walks to Mason Crews and Payton Pennington. The Aggies turned to Brandyn Garcia out of the bullpen and the lefty retired the first hitter he faced before Jack Wagner connected on a three-run homer to left field to surge the Texans back in front.
B6 | TAR 4, A&M 3
An inning later the Aggies had an answer to draw back to within a run with big swings from the bottom of the order. A&M put traffic on the bases immediately with a leadoff walk to Brett Minnich and a one-out single by Jace LaViolette. Two batters later Jordan Thompson delivered an RBI single to center field to score LaViolette and Max Kaufer followed that hit with a sure single of his own to right field to score Ryan Targac.
B8 | A&M 6, TAR 4
Thompson hit a leadoff single through the left side and advanced to second on a Travis Chestnut walk. Haas then hit a go-ahead home run to left field to give the Aggies their first lead of the night.
T9 | A&M 6, TAR 5
With an out, Choy Foo singled up the middle and went to second when Alec Williams walked. Kooper Shook singled to load the bases. Robert Hogan came in to pitch and Crews singled to shortstop to bring Choy Foo home.
TEXAS A&M QUOTES
Head Coach Jim Schlossnagle
On the defensive side of the ball... "Good defense. This time last year, Bost couldn't turn that double play. He did a nice job with it. Trevor didn't have great at-bats. He hit hard to right field and had a sac fly. He didn't have very many good at-bats after that, but he played great defense. There are a lot of ways to help your team win a game."
Freshman Pitcher Justin Lamkin
On going into this game... "It was great. I knew it was going to be a good one when I was in the bullpen and putting in the early work, really riding the fastball. I was in the right mental space, so I knew it was going to be good."
Junior Infielder Hunter Haas
On his dinger to put the Aggies in the lead... "Yeah, that was huge. Honestly, I was just looking for a pitch that I could handle. I got down early with two strikes, so I got lucky with the change-up. I was able to pull it a little and kind of release my frustration there too because it seemed like sometimes on Tuesdays, we just haven't had good bounces. We'll take all the wins we can get; you know, a win is a win."
The road does not get easier for the Aggies this weekend when the No. 4 Florida Gators come to Blue Bell Park for a three-game SEC series. The series opener will be aired on SEC Network+ with Will Johnson and Boomer White on the call. It can also be heard locally on 1150 AM/ 93.7 FM The Zone with Andrew Monaco and Rody Barker in the booth.