The Tigers still took the series with victories in the previous two, but they couldn’t hide their disappointment with the finale. The Tigers left nine runners on base, had a pair thrown out at the plate and committed an error that led to four unearned runs.
“It would’ve been nice to finish the job,” said LSU coach Paul Mainieri. “It just wasn’t our day today...I thought this was a winnable game. The breaks just didn’t go our way.”
LSU (37-7, 14-6 SEC) seemed poised for another big offensive performance early in Saturday’s game against A&M (37-7, 13-7). The Tigers got three consecutive two-out hits in the first inning. Alex Bregman tried to score from second on a single by Kade Scivicque, but Texas A&M LF Logan Taylor nailed him at the plate.
The next inning ended in similar fashion. Jared Foster belted a two-out double to left field, and Chris Chinea got the green light to score from first. He too got thrown out at the plate.
“That was a real big momentum swing, right at the beginning,” Mainieri said. “If they’re safe…we take an early lead, and maybe it’s a different ballgame.”
A&M C Michael Barash sent a one-out grounder to Bregman. He made the routine throw to first, but Chinea dropped it. That led to a disastrous four-run inning.
“It tilted the scales in their direction,” Mainieri said. “We dug ourselves a hole, and against their pitching staff, it’s hard to come back.”
LSU starter Austin Bain walked the next batter, but did strike out Nick Banks for the second out of the inning. He had an 0-2 count to the next one, but couldn’t get out of the inning.
Texas A&M got four consecutive two-out singles to drive in four runs and take an early lead.
“They just got some momentum and built off of that,” Bain said. “I’ve just got to execute my pitches.”
Bain did get better from there. He allowed only one hit the rest of his outing, a solo home run in the sixth. Bain took the loss in his second career SEC start but went 5 2/3 innings, allowing one earned run with five strikeouts and four walks.
Jake Godfrey replaced him and worked 2 2/3 innings, allowing one run on two hits. Zac Person and Jesse Stallings recorded the final two outs.
“We pitched well enough to win today,” Mainieri said. “It’s a shame we wasted those performances.”
LSU started to claw its way back in the fourth inning, cutting the deficit in half. Andrew Stevenson got a one-out double to right field, and he scored on a single by Chris Sciambra. He came in on an error by the center fielder, making it 4-2 at the time.
But the LSU offense slumbered after that. The Tigers had just two hits in the final five innings, and only one base runner made it into scoring position.
Mark Laird struck out looking with a man on second in the ninth to end the game.
“We got beat by a good team,” Mainieri said. “Today they were just a little bit better than us when they needed to be.”