March 9, 2001

Norman, Okla. - The Oklahoma baseball team was unable to hold on to a four-run lead in the final two innings Friday night as Texas A&M rallied to score six runs in the eighth inning to defeat the Sooners, 11-9, in the series opener at L. Dale Mitchell Park. The Aggies (11-8, 2-2 Big 12) tagged OU reliever Michael Bradbury for two runs and Mark Roberts (0-2) for four more runs in the top of the eighth to gain the decisive lead. Oklahoma dropped to 7-12 overall and 3-1 in the Big 12 Conference with their third-straight loss.

The Aggies spotted five runs in the top of the third inning, three off of back-to-back home runs by first baseman Jeff Freeman, a two-run shot, and catcher Jason Gremminger to take a 5-1 advantage. OU's offense and starting pitcher Evan Greusel then helped the Sooners take control of the game for the next four frames. The offense, which registered its fourth double-digit hit performance in the last five games, closed the gap on the Aggies lead by scoring a single run in the bottom of the third and two in the fourth inning. Oklahoma regained the lead in the fifth inning when a two-run homer by senior catcher Sean Smith (1-for-4) gave the Sooners a 6-5 edge.

OU's offense would tag on three more runs through the next two innings to end the scoring for the Sooners. Senior leftfielder Bryan King and junior shortstop Sergio Garcia lead all OU hitters with three hit efforts, while Garcia, Smith and senior third baseman Jason Bartlett led the team with two RBIs apiece.

Greusel worked seven innings and only ran into trouble in the third inning. The junior finished the contest by giving up 11 hits, five earned runs, five walks, while striking out four batters.

A&M reliever Chris picked up his first save of the season by closing out the final two innings for the Aggies in relief of reliever Steven Ponder who evened his record at 1-1.

The two teams square off again tomorrow for a 2 p.m. start time at L. Dale Mitchell Park.