Texas A&M Softball Opens SEC Tournament with Win Over Gamecocks

(Source: Florida Athletics)

Story by Shelby Hild, Athletics Communications

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The No. 12-seeded Texas A&M softball team (29-25) grabbed its first-ever win in the Southeastern Conference Tournament Tuesday night, taking down No. 13 seed South Carolina (26-30), 5-3.

TOP OFFENSIVE PLAYERS
vs. South Carolina – W, 5-3

Trinity Cannon: 2-for-3, 3 RBI
Koko Wooley: 1-for-2, BB, 2B, RBI

PITCHING BREAKDOWN
vs. South Carolina – W, 5-3

Emiley Kennedy: 4.2 IP, 9 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 4 K
Grace Uribe: 0.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 0 K
Shaylee Ackerman: 1.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K

KEY INNINGS / NOTABLES
vs. South Carolina – W, 5-3

  • The Aggies broke open scoring in the bottom of the third, as three walks were issued by South Carolina, including an intentional walk to Katie Dack, before a bases-clearing double to left field by Trinity Cannon gave A&M a 3-0 advantage.
  • Koko Wooley drew a walk to lead off the fourth and moved her way around the bases with a stolen base and an error. A ground out to third by Cayden Baker sent Wooley charging home for a four-run cushion.
  • South Carolina fought back in the fifth, scratching three runs across, before a ground out to Rylen Wiggins got the Aggies out of the inning.
  • The Maroon & White added an insurance run in the home half of the inning with a double to left field from Wooley.
  • Shaylee Ackerman stepped into the circle to close the game, holding the Gamecocks hitless while fanning three to earn her first career save.

Head coach Jo Evans
Opening statement…
“Just really proud of our ballclub to come out here and win a game. It’s been a long time coming for us. Feels nice to get the monkey off our back. You look at last weekend, and I thought we played really well getting a win against Arkansas. Didn’t end up winning that series, but our team competed so well against the No. 4 team in the country and SEC Champion. For us to be able to take that confidence and come into today was really important. Of course Trin (Trinity Cannon) stepping up in a big moment there. We did a great job taking advantage of the walks we got, the free passes and getting some timely hitting from that. We really proud of our kids. Really proud Shaylee Ackerman coming in there and closing. Just a good team win for us.”

On getting the program’s first ever SEC Tournament win…

“You always want to be really excited and also I have this feeling of relief. It’s been a long time coming. You look at our seven previous games we lost five games by one run. Sort of inductive of our season a bit. For our team to fight and scratch and claw to get a win it means a lot to me, our program. This is a good ball club right here and I’ve been really proud of them and how resilient they’ve been.”

Sophomore infielder Trinity Cannon
On the team’s performance and what was working for her…
“What worked for us was being confident in each other. I know it gets really hard when somebody makes an error and kind of breaks momentum, but our pitchers have a lot of trust in our defense and we have a lot of trust in them. For them to throw their strikes and for us to back them up. Our pitching staff as a whole tonight was really poised. What Shaylee (Ackerman) came in and did tonight was absolutely amazing.”

On getting the program’s first ever SEC Tournament win…
“I don’t think you can see any game that is too big or little. We were really excited to make history tonight, but I think this is a good starting point.”

UP NEXT
The Aggies face the No. 5 seed Florida Gators Wednesday at 4 p.m. CT. The game airs on Gospel 97.3 FM and radioaggieland.com.