Ags Open Up Big12 Tourney With Win Over Tech

OKLAHOMA CITY - Michael Wacha was tremendous in his first postseason start and Matt Juengel drove in a career-high four to lead Texas A&M to a 9-2 over Texas Tech Wednesday morning in the opening game of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship before 4,129 fans at AT&T Bricktown Ballpark.

OKLAHOMA CITY - Michael Wacha was tremendous in his first postseason start and Matt Juengel drove in a career-high four to lead Texas A&M to a 9-2 over Texas Tech Wednesday morning in the opening game of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship before 4,129 fans at AT&T Bricktown Ballpark.

Wacha, a true freshman, carried a perfect game into the sixth and faced just three over the minimum over seven strong innings. He allowed just two hits while walking one and striking out seven in leading the Aggies (37-19-1) to their 15th win in the last 18 games. The three hits by the Red Raiders (27-28) were the fewest allowed by an A&M pitching staff in Big 12 Championship history.

"I felt like Michael Wacha set the tone for the day, being ready to go at 9 o'clock in the morning," A&M coach Rob Childress said. "It all starts on the mound, and Michael retired the first 16 hitters of the game against a team that led the league in offense. We were able to score early and got big two-out hits today. Out of the nine we scored today, I think seven were with two outs. In all phases we played pretty well today."

The Aggies got off to a quick start against Tech starter Ben Flora, pouncing for a pair of runs in the first on a Brodie Greene RBI base hit and Juengel swinging-bunt single on the infield.

After another run came home on a squeeze play in the fourth, A&M answered Tech's first score of the day with a key two-out, two-run single to right by Caleb Shofner in the sixth that made the score 5-2.

Back-to-back home runs with two outs in the seventh blew the game open. Juengel launched a three-run shot into the bleachers in left for his seventh of the season, and Adam Smith followed with his eighth five pitches later, an opposite-field blast to right center to close the scoring.

Wacha retired the first 16 hitters in order, striking out seven and getting help from his defense--diving stops by Shofner at third and Joe Patterson at first, and a diving catch in left center by Joaquin Hinojosa in the fifth helped preserve the perfect game. Bonham Hough would end the bid with one out in the sixth, however, with a one-out home run to left in the sixth.

Wacha improved to 8-2 on the season with the victory, while John Stilson allowed one hit and fanned four over the final two frames. Flora (3-3) took the loss, allowing six hits and three home runs over 5 1/3. He struck out a career-best six.

Juengel and Shofner had two hits apiece and combined to drive in six of the nine Aggie runs. A&M had five two-out hits on the day and scored seven of nine with two down.

Texas A&M resumes play in the tournament Thursday when the Aggies face No. 8-seed Missouri at 7:30 p.m. Junior Barret Loux (9-2, 2.53 ERA) will take the mound and is scheduled to face Tiger left-hander Kelly Fick (2-1, 3.53). Fans can listen locally on WTAW-AM 1620 or follow through free live video and stats at big12sports.com.


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