Texas A&M Softball Edges Lehigh in Regionals

Texas A&M Softball Edges Lehigh in Regionals

NORMAN, Okla - The last time Lehigh had played Texas A&M was in the 2009 NCAA Regional. Lehigh won that game, 3-2 in game five of the 2009 Gainesville Regional.

On Friday the two schools met again and this time Texas A&M was victorious, 2-1, in the opening game of the 2015 NCAA Regional. The game was scoreless through three innings before Lehigh took a 1-0 lead on a single, hit batter, and a pair of sacrifice flys heading into the fourth inning against Aggie pitcher Rachel Fox.

With one out in the bottom of the fourth, freshman Kristen Cuyos hit her ninth homer of the year over the right field fence to tie the game at one-one.

Sitting on a 1-1 tie, the Mountain Hawks threatened in the top of the fifth, loading the bases after three singles. Fox and the Aggies got out of the jam after a quick catch from senior Brittany Clopton turned into a double play, catching the lead runner out at home plate.

Back-to-back singles from Clopton and freshman Tori Vidales put two on base for the Aggies quickly in the bottom of the fifth. A sacrifice bunt from sophomore April Ryan moved both into scoring position before junior Cali Lapnhear reached on a fielder’s choice, as Lehigh tagged Clopton out at home plate. With runners sitting on the corners, freshman Ashley Walters drilled a single into left field, advancing to second on the throw, giving Vidales plenty of time to give A&M its first lead of the afternoon. Junior Breanna Dozier drew a full count walk to load the bases but the Aggies wouldn’t push anymore across, keeping their lead at 2-1.

After a leadoff double to start the sixth inning, junior Katie Marks entered the circle to relieve Fox, ending the inning with three quick outs to send the Aggies into the bottom of the sixth.

Freshman Hailey Rebar, pinch hitting for freshman Erica Russell, knocked a laser into right field in her first base hit of the game. Russell reentered to run at first, advancing on a sac bunt from Clopton, and Vidales was issued an intentional walk, putting runners on first and second for the Aggies. Neither runner could get home and A&M headed into the seventh holding a one run lead over Lehigh.

Marks and the Aggie defense shut down a late Lehigh threat, after singles put two runners on base, to end the game and send Texas A&M into the winner’s bracket of the Norman regional.