Photo Credit - Anna Tiplick/IDS

Indiana Baseball Survives Texas A&M Rally, Advances to NCAA Regional Finals

The Indiana Hoosiers have survived and advanced in the NCAA Tournament once again.  This time the Hoosiers were able to get redemption against Texas A&M, who had defeated Indiana 10-3 on Friday.  Indiana returned the favor by a score of 9-7, eliminating the Aggies in the process.

The Hoosiers exploded out of the gates with a 9 run top of the 1st against Texas A&M on Sunday afternoon.  IU accumulated 8 hits including 2 home runs, and added 2 walks as they sent 13 batters to the plate in the monster inning.

It looked like IU might cruise to victory.  Perhaps they got a little too comfortable with that big early lead.

Inconsistency at the plate has been a challenge for much of the season for IU.  That issue resurfaced mid-game on Sunday afternoon, as the Hoosiers went scoreless the rest of the way after the 1st inning.

Meanwhile Texas A&M methodically chipped away at the lead.  In both the 8th and 9th innings the Aggies had the tying run at the plate, and also had the go-ahead run at the plate in the 9th.  That’s when IU went to its staple move of the game — the double play.  The Hoosiers turned a 1-out ground ball in the bottom of the 9th into a game-ending double play.  It was one of four rally-ending double plays for the Hoosiers on the day.

Despite giving up 3 hits and an earned run, IU closer Matt Lloyd was able to do enough to earn the save and keep the Hoosiers alive in the tournament.  It was an incredible effort by Lloyd, who had played first base in the 100 degree heat for the entire game prior to assuming his closer duties.

Lloyd was productive from the plate as well, delivering 3 hits including a 3-run opposite field homer, his 10th on the season.  Luke Miller also had 3 hits on the day, while Matt Gorski, Ryan Fineman and Justin Walker each had 2 hits.

Tim Herrin earned the win, going 3 innings and giving up 1 earned run.

There will be no rest for the Hoosiers.  They play again tonight against No. 1 seed Texas at 9:00 EST.  Indiana will have to beat the Longhorns both tonight and tomorrow to advance out of the Austin Regional.

You can see the official NCAA Tournament bracket here.

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