No. 16 Aggie Baseball Busts Out the Broomsticks in 8-2 Win Over Mississippi State

WTAW 1620 Aggie Baseball

Emily Wedemeyer, Texas A&M Athletics Communications

BRYAN-COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The No. 16 Texas A&M baseball team (33-16, 17-10 SEC) completed the sweep over Mississippi State (25-27, 9-18 SEC) with an 8-2 victory Sunday on Olsen Field at Blue Bell Park.

All was quiet until the fourth in which Mississippi State strung together a pair of singles to jump on the board. The Maroon & White responded by taking advantage of a pair of fielding errors which plated a trio of Aggies in the home half of the inning. Sophomore Ryan Targac led the way at the plate, going 3-for-3 with a walk, two runs and a RBI. A&M had another three-run inning in the sixth as Austin Bost contributed a pair of insurance runs via a two-out double in the eighth.

Sophomore left-handed pitcher Will Johnston earned his second save of the season, striking out five Bulldogs in 2.1 innings of work. Johnston, starting pitcher Ryan Prager and Robert Hogan (3-1) combined for 10 strikeouts and limited Mississippi State to six hits.

The victory marked the team’s first sweep of a conference opponent since the Aggies swept Kentucky on the road in March 2019.

Ryan Targac – 3-for-3, 2 R, RBI, BB
Will Johnston – 2.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K
Ryan Prager – 4.1 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 3 K

T4| Mississippi State’s Kellum Clark singled with two outs, advanced to third on a single by Kamren James and charged home on an A&M fielding error. MSU 1, A&M 0

B4| A&M capitalized on a pair of defensive errors made by Mississippi State to scratch three runs across. Brett Minnich led off with a single before Troy Claunch reached and advanced to third on a defensive miscue, plating Minnich. A single by Ryan Targac sent Claunch home, followed by a second MSU fielding error that allowed Jordan Thompson to reach base and advance Targac to second. Targac took third on a fielder’s choice and scored on a one-out sac-fly courtesy of Trevor Werner. A&M 3, MSU 1

B6| A pair of walks issued to Targac and Thompson set the scene for back-to-back singles by Kole Kaler and Werner to tack on two insurance runs. Jack Moss reached on a fielder’s choice, advancing Kaler to third before Dylan Rock’s one-out sac-fly plated the Aggies’ sixth run. A&M 6, MSU 1

T7| With two outs, RJ Yeager tripled to right center and scored on a single by Luke Hancock. A&M 6, MSU 2

B8| Free bases were issued to Moss and Rock before a two-out double by Austin Bost sent both runners home, extending the Aggies lead to six and ensuring the victory. A&M 8, MSU 2

The Aggies wrap up the regular season on the road against Ole Miss beginning Thursday. First pitch is slated for 6:32 p.m. at Swayze Field.

Head Coach Jim Schlossnagle

On the importance of winning three in a row…
“I think the most important thing to us was we had to prove to ourselves that we could win three games in a row. To win a regional, to win a conference tournament you are going to have to do that. That was good for us. We have not swept anyone since the first weekend against Fordham, so it was good for us to get that accomplishment.”

Sophomore second baseman Ryan Targac
On staying hot in the postseason…
“It is not the best team; it is the team that plays the best. It does not matter what you do preseason or the middle of the season, it matters what you do now and here on out. It is about getting hot at the right time, and I think we are in a good spot.”

Sophomore LHP Will Johnston
On his confidence playing a role in his dominant pitching performance…
“Coach Yeskie was calling some good pitches. I came in and tried to do my job and execute by getting ahead in the count. As I have thrown a little bit more this past month, I have started to really gain some more confidence.”

Freshman LHP Ryan Prager
On the team’s momentum building for post season…
“I don’t think we have won three games on a weekend since week one. Being able to get that sweep gets our momentum going, but we are still just taking it one day at a time.”