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Oklahoma
Texas A&M Baseball

Texas A&M's historic run ends in Omaha as Oklahoma's Sandlin rolls, 5-1

June 22, 2022
14,265

Game #64: Oklahoma 5, #5 Texas A&M 1
Records: Texas A&M (44-20, 19-11), Oklahoma (45-22, 15-9)
WP: David Sandlin (9-4)
LP: Ryan Prager (1-4)
Box Score


OMAHA, Neb. — In a remarkable march to the Men’s College World Series, Texas A&M became proficient in posting come-from-behind baseball victories.

So, a five-run deficit to Oklahoma on Wednesday afternoon was no cause for panic. The Aggies (44-20) would just bide their time awaiting the inevitable offensive surge.

Instead, there was an offensive dirge. The big inning never arrived and A&M’s momentous first baseball season under Jim Schlossnagle ended with a 5-1 loss to the Sooners (45-22).

“We've been here multiple times,” catcher Troy Claunch lamented. “We just tried to keep plugging. Today wasn't our day. We've hit that lucky button enough times this season, and today, it ran out on us. Just one heck of a run.”

Oklahoma’s Jimmy Crooks crashed a three-run home run off A&M starter Ryan Prager (1-4) in the first inning.

“I think all in all, Aggies are pretty proud today. The beauty is that we're still real disappointed too because we want to win championships. I would anticipate — even though I never take these trips for granted — I would anticipate us being back here at some point.” 
- A&M head coach Jim Schlossnagle

The Sooners capitalized on an error to add another run in the third and scored again in the fifth.

Five runs usually wouldn’t faze the Aggies. They’ve rallied from a nine-run deficit to beat South Carolina. They rallied from a 6-1 deficit to topple Alabama, 12-8.

They scored seven runs in the ninth inning to beat TCU, 15-9.

But the Aggies never broke through against Oklahoma right-handed sophomore David Sandlin (9-4), who allowed only a Dylan Rock solo home run in seven brilliant innings.

Sandlin gave a hint of what was to come by striking out the first three batters of the game. Overall, he allowed just five hits and one walk. His 100th — and final — pitch resulted in his 12th strikeout.

“He was executing pitches,” Schlossnagle said. “He really had a good breaking ball going.

“I just thought he had us on our heels the whole game.”

Sandlin was especially effective on the rare occasions the Aggies had runners in scoring position.

Claunch and Brett Minnich stroked back-to-back singles with two out in the second. Sandlin struck out Jordan Thompson to end the inning.

Austin Bost walked and Ryan Targac singled to start the fourth inning. Sandlin recovered to strike out Claunch, Minnich and Thompson.

“He was just able to mix all of his pitches,” Claunch said. “He was able to get ahead early with fastballs in the first half, and then next time around was able to mix and kind of threw whatever he wanted whenever he wanted.”

OU’s star reliever Trevin Michael threw two scoreless innings to close A&M’s season.

Jamie Maury, TexAgs
Despite being picked to finish sixth in the SEC West, the Aggies defied all odds and compiled two wins in the MCWS among other historic accomplishments. 

Still, the Aggies remained within striking distance because of a herculean relief effort by Jacob Palisch, who replaced Prager with one out in the third.

Palisch threw a season-high 82 pitches in 5.2 innings. He allowed three hits and one run and struck out eight.

“It was just one of those days where I knew what was at stake. I wanted to give everything I had to those guys (teammates),” Palisch said. “Fortunately, I had some pretty good command. Struggled here and there, but I wanted to leave it all out there on the line for those guys. It didn't matter how I felt. It was more just if the results were still working, I was going to run back out there.”

Some would say Palisch should have run out to start the game. Schlossnagle is among them.

“If I had known what I know now, I would have started Palisch,” he said. “That's easy to say, but if that's your mindset, then you are cashing in one game for the tournament because he already doesn't bounce back awesome, and obviously, he gave us a ton today.

"Our offense has been good, so I think the story is way less about who pitched for us and way more about Sandlin and the closer for them. They had us on our heels.”

The Aggies will get back on their feet after a period of disappointment. Then this gritty group of grinders will celebrate their unlikely uprising from a lackluster 10-6 start.

They surged to win the treacherous SEC West Division. They exorcized the demons of TCU in the regional tournament. They claimed A&M’s first Men’s College World Series victory in 29 years, and in the process, eliminated the Texas Longhorns and Notre Dame Fighting Irish.

There is so much for the Aggies to look back on.

“We just tried to keep plugging. Today wasn't our day. We've hit that lucky button enough times this season, and today it ran out on us. Just one heck of a run.”
-A&M catcher Troy Claunch

Even better, there is so much to look forward to in the Schlossnagle era.

“The best way that the younger players on our team can honor the guys that were just up here (Claunch and Palisch) and the other older players that will be gone is to work their tails off to get us back here,” Schlossnagle said. “Then hopefully we play just a little bit better. Got to find some starting pitching that's a little more consistent. 

“I think all in all, Aggies are pretty proud today. The beauty is that we're still real disappointed too because we want to win championships. I would anticipate — even though I never take these trips for granted — I would anticipate us being back here at some point.” 

Discussion from...

Texas A&M's historic run ends in Omaha as Oklahoma's Sandlin rolls, 5-1

9,451 Views | 6 Replies | Last: 3 mo ago by TheChameleon
SeattleAg05
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AG
So much fun this season. I loved the whole thing.

Hats off to the departing guys: Rock, Palisch, Claunch, (Im sure Im missing guys). They all left it out on the field.
sharpdressedman
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Congratulations to the players and coaches for an amazing season of Aggie baseball, finishing on the brink of playing for the national championship. Thanks for the equally improbable and genuinely wonderful thrills in year one of a new era.
jigsaw87
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writeman
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Congratulations to the outstanding 2022 baseball season compiled by the
Texas Aggies. We will never forget your tenacity while accomplishing a remarkable
effort that we believe is just the beginning of many rewarding campaigns.
ntrain45
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AG
Such an inspiring group of guys. Congrats to the team for turning the corner loudly. That's the stuff... And to our one-year transfers that helped to spark it, you are forever AGGIES.
TheChameleon
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AG
A truly special season. Magic at times.... So many incredible moments. What a ride. Everyone involved with this program should be extremely proud- just an amazing accomplishment to have this type of year. The entire roster, what a group of players this was... Fun to watch and the coaching staff did a phenomenal job. Ran into a very good OU team and their starting pitcher just had it going... Have to give credit. So much to look back on and appreciate from this season and just as much to look forward to. Congrats to this team.
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