School: Texas A&M
Position: Third base
Before entering the SEC Tournament, Texas A&M freshman Hunter Melton had appeared in just under half of the Aggies’ scheduled games. However, in the Aggies’ first ever SEC Tournament appearance, Melton made a name for himself by coming up clutch for Texas A&M with a three-run home run in the top of the fourth inning.
The home run not only gave the Aggies the lead, but it was also the first home run of the 2013 SEC Tournament at the Hoover Met which boasts an outfield that sits at 405 feet in center field and 385 to left center, where Melton homered.
While many teams depend on their veterans to make clutch plays in the postseason, Texas A&M head coach Rob Childress was very impressed with Melton’s success.
“I felt for the first couple of innings we were basically slept walk thought the game; made a mistake in the second inning, had a balk and made another throwing error. Just like that we were giving them the lead and all of the momentum. Then Hunter Melton came back and gave us a huge lift with that three-run home run in a ballpark in where it’s the first time that we play in it; that’s enormous. For him to do that, he gave us a little bit of life.
Childress also added, “(Johnny) Magliozzi has got great stuff; he’s an extreme competitor, but Hunter got the ball in the air and put in a great swing on it. His power doesn’t show up at batting practice, but you put him in a game and he’s a baseball player; the power shows up in the game.”
In addition to Melton’s home run, Melton also had an RBI single in the top of the sixth inning, accounting for four of Texas A&M’s RBI as well as one of their runs.
When asked of his thoughts on the home run, Melton explained “when I had two strikes, I had to fight off some tough pitches. I finally got a pitch in the zone and elevated it in to drive in two runs.”
As Texas A&M is now guaranteed at least two more games in Hoover, Melton has the opportunity to continue to shine for the Aggies as they look to secure a spot in the NCAA Tournament.