Softball (No. 5)
The Aggie softball team split the weekend series with Texas Tech this weekend to improve to 39-8 on the season and 12-5 in the Big 12, but Sunday's loss may have ended their shot at the Big 12 Championship.
On Friday, Megan Gibson struck out a career-high 12 batters and Sharonda McDonald was 3-for-4 at the plate with two runs scored as the 5th-ranked Aggies shutout Texas Tech 5-0.
The Aggies plated two runs in the first inning, after Sharonda McDonald led-off with an infield single and moved over to second on a sac bunt by Macie Morrow. Gibson drew her 45th walk of the season and scored off Scarborough's double to the right-centerfield wall, giving A&M a 2-0 lead.
The Aggies added another run in the second, pushing their lead to 3-0. Mandy Gegen earned a walk to start the inning. A&M loaded the bases with back-to-back singles by Joy Davis and McDonald. Morrow recorded her second sac of the day, a fly ball to centerfield that brought Gegen home.
A&M added an insurance run in the third and another in the sixth to put the game out of reach for Tech.
Gibson (16-3) allowed just three hits and three runners to reach scoring position and earned her seventh shutout of the season.
On Saturday, Gibson continued her assault on the Red Raiders by going 2-for-4 at the plate with two RBIs but it wasn't enough, after a four-run sixth inning by Texas Tech put a damper on Senior Day at the Aggie Softball Complex.
Tech plated two runs in the first inning off two singles and a double. Ashley Parker led off with a hard chopper at third base and stole second and came home on a little dribbler back to third by Leah Legler. Designated player Montana Patin ripped a double to bring Parker home. Legler scored on an Aggie overthrow at the plate.
The Aggies tied the game at two after posting runs in the first and third innings.
Two innings later Lisa Gorzycki reached on a bunt single, stole second and scored on a double into left field by Gibson. The RBI was Gibson's second of the game and 34th of the season.
But four base hits, a walk and a wild pitch in the sixth gave Tech a 6-2 lead.
The Aggies put runners on in the sixth and seventh innings but could not manufacture a run, leaving four runners in scoring position on the afternoon.
Amanda Scarborough (20-5) saw her 37.1 consecutive scoreless inning streak come to an end after working 5.2 innings and giving up six runs on 10 hits .
"The difference today was that Scarborough just didn't have that pitch that put a batter away," said A&M head coach Jo Evans. "They did a good job of staying in their at bats and not getting discouraged or defensive with two strikes and really staying aggressive."
Women's Tennis (No. 24)
The 24th-ranked Texas A&M women's tennis team defeated Oklahoma, 4-0, on Friday at the Plaza Tennis Center to advance to the semifinals of the Big 12 Conference Women's Tennis Championship for the eighth consecutive year, but that was as far as they would make it this year.
For the second time this year, Texas A&M and Texas battled down to the last match standing, and in the second consecutive meeting, Texas walked away with a 4-3 victory.
When the two teams met earlier this season, the victor would, for all practical purposes, be assured of a share of the Big 12 Conference regular-season title with Baylor. This time, an appearance in the finals of the Big 12 Championship was at stake, with the winner between the No. 2 seed Longhorns and the No. 3 seed Aggies advancing to face the Lady Bears for the tournament championship title Sunday at the Plaza Tennis Center.
"It was another tough result from Texas," a disappointed A&M coach Bobby Kleinecke said. "You lay it all out there again. I didn't think we played as well as we did the last time, but you have to give credit to Texas. They came up with the shots when they needed them."
A&M took an early lead after winning the first two doubles matches to be completed, but the Longhorns won the first set in four singles matches, including a crucial comeback by Texas' Courtney Zauft at the No. 3 court, which swung the momentum back to Texas and eventually proved to be the difference in the match.
Zauft was down 2-5 in the first set before rallying to win 7-5. She went on to win the second set, 6-4, to claim the match for Texas and send them to Sunday's Championship match.
The Aggies (20-6) now await the announcement of the 64-team NCAA Championship field, which will be made Tuesday at between 1:30-2 p.m. on ESPNEWS. A&M, which fell to Baylor in Waco in the second round of the 2006 NCAA tournament, is expecting to make its eighth consecutive appearance in the postseason tournament.
The seventh-seeded Texas A&M men's tennis team fell to second-seeded Oklahoma State, 4-1, in the quarterfinals of the 2007 Big 12 Conference Championship on Friday.
The Aggies (14-11) and Cowboys (17-3) battled neck-and-neck for the doubles point, but A&M senior Bryan Wooten and freshman Luka Ocvirk fell 9-8 (2) to OSU's Arstem Burmistrau and Nathan Byrnes at No. 2. Wooten and Ocvirk entered the match as the only undefeated doubles duo in the Big 12 at 5-0.
"We had our chances there in doubles and put ourselves behind in the match," Texas A&M head coach Steve Denton said. "Bryan (Wooten) and Luka (Ocvirk) had not lost thus far and were serving for the match at 8-7 to put us in a position to win the doubles point. I thought it would be difficult for us to win four singles matches against Oklahoma State after dropping a close one (4-3) in Stillwater earlier this month."
Once singles play began, it was all down hill for the Aggies who claimed just one point from senior John Nallon with a hard-fought 7-6 (8), 7-6 (3) win on court No. 6. OSU's Daniel Byrnes clinched the match with a three-set victory over freshman Luka Ocvirk, 7-6 (6), 2-6, 6-2, at No. 3.
The Aggies will learn of their postseason fate on Tuesday, May 1 as the 64-team field for the 2007 NCAA Division I Men's Tennis Championships will be announced on ESPNEWS at approximately 1:30 p.m. (CT).
The Aggies posted a pair of third place finishes on Friday and advanced a couple more relay squads to Saturday's Championship of America finals.
Nick Robinson raced the 400 hurdles at 9 a.m. and clocked 51.41 for third place in his heat. Robinson ended up in third place overall as his section was the fastest of the day.
Cade Liverman finished second in his heat, but the corresponding time of 54.57 as a result of the heavy ran placed him 25th overall among a field of 60 hurdlers.
In hurdle relay action the Aggie women placed third in the shuttle hurdle race with a time of 54.68. A&M ran with the foursome of Tresha Henry, Whitney Holmes, Lindsey Adams and Jennifer Williams for the rarely run relay.
In the Championship of America final for the women's 4 x 100 relay, the A&M women finished fifth in 44.72. They ran with a foursome that included Tresha Henry, Porscha Lucas, Khrystal Carter and Simone Facey.
Field event finals on Friday had Crystal McBrady placing fifth in the college triple jump with an effort of 39-10.5 (12.15) while Angela Thomas placed 10th with a mark of 38-3.75 (11.98).
In individual qualifying races, Jennifer Williams ran a 13.35 to win her heat of the 100 hurdles and advance to the Championship final.
On Saturday, Texas A&M capped the 113th Penn Relay Carnival with a pair of runner-up performances in the Championship of America 4 x 400 relays.
In the women's race the Aggies led through the first two legs of Tresha Henry and Clora Williams. Then a pair of freshman ran the third leg as Sandy Wooten took over for A&M and Brandi Cross ran for South Carolina, the NCAA Indoor champions. Cross moved into the lead as the race reached the anchor leg. Carolina anchor Natasha Hastings cruised home for a 3:29.78 winning time.
Katie Baker was the Aggie anchor and she held off LSU to secure the runner-up position in an outdoor season best of 3:32.08 over the Tiger's 3:32.40.
The A&M men needed a strong anchor leg from Justin Oliver to move from fourth to second and challenge LSU for the victory. Running the first three legs for the Aggies were Bryant McCombs, A.C. Robinson and Nick Robinson.
Oliver closed the gap on the three runners ahead of him on the anchor leg in short fashion and worked towards the lead on the backstretch.
Heading into the homestretch it was a race to the finish with four schools still in contention. LSU anchor Armanti Hayes pulled ahead for a winning time of 3:07.34 while Oliver moved ahead of Kentucky and South Carolina to get A&M across the line in second place at 3:08.20.
Texas A&M set another school record in the 4 x 200 relay, knocking a couple of seconds off the standard they set Friday (1:34.37) during qualifying with a 1:32.06 for third place in the Championship of America final.
In the final the Aggies used a line-up of Katie Baker, Elizabeth Adeoti, Simone Facey and Porscha Lucas. Facey's leg pulled A&M into second place behind LSU, but South Carolina had the stronger anchor with Shalonda Solomon as she nipped the Tigers' anchor, Kelly Ann Baptist, at the finish line – 1:31.56 to 1:31.58.
The Aggie track squad will return to action to compete in the Big 12 Outdoor Championships on May 11-13.
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