TCU was able to take the series tonight at Cal with a 5-4 victory thanks to a 5-run 6th inning. Cal’s starter Jared Horn appeared to be a groove throughout much of the game but as always with this team, they are never quite out of a game. Now, the Frogs will have a chance for a very important road, non-conference sweep tomorrow.
Cal struck first in the game in the 3rd inning as a throw home from Warner to get Eden got away from Skoug, allowing the runner to score and give the Bears a 1-0 lead. Cal added to its lead in the 5th inning by using a sac bunt to advance a runner to 2nd before bringing him around on a single to make it 2-0.
The Frogs though would come right back in the top of the 6th as Cam Warner drove the first pitch he saw over the left field wall to cut into the Bears’ lead. After Brown followed that up with a double, Cal was forced to go to the bullpen, bringing in Erik Martinez. The Frogs would take advantage of the change later in the inning as a 2-run double from Landestoy followed by a 2-run home run by Wade put TCU up 5-2.
The Bears would chase Howard after a pair of singles to open the bottom of the 7th, but reliever Cal Coughlin came in and was able to limit the damage, only allowing Cal to plate one. Coughlin cruised through the 8th inning and paved the way for Durbin Feltman in the 9th. Feltman would give up one run in the 9th but got the job done and held on for the 5-4 victory.
It was a solid day on the mound for Brian Howard, who went 6+ innings while allowing 8 hits and striking out 4 batters. Despite letting Bears get on base, he did a good job of preventing any big innings, which helped TCU stay in striking distance. He also worked quickly and efficiently, only throwing 78 pitches.
At the plate, Austen Wade was the main man, going 2-for-4 including his home run, while also walking once. It was a tough day for Evan Skoug who has been on fire recently. He never reached base in his five attempts and struck out three times.
One concern for the night was the three errors defensively, two of which were instrumental in Cal’s runs. TCU was able to overcome them tonight, but as we approach the postseason, the Frogs will need to be making clean, consistent throws.
A player for Cal to keep an eye on tomorrow is Jonah Davis, who had quite the day at the plate, who went 3-for-4 at the plate and drove in one of the Bears’ runs.
With the series win in hand, TCU will be looking for win #40 tomorrow. First pitch will be at approximately 3:05pm CT and the game will be broadcast on Pac-12 Network.
Important Scores Around the Nation
The team in bold indicates the team that TCU would benefit from if they won.
#4 Texas Tech 16, Kansas 4
Kansas State 10, Baylor 8
Kansas State 6, Baylor 5
Oklahoma State 5, #21 Oklahoma 2 (Suspended midway through the 5th. Will be resumed tomorrow as part of doubleheader.)
Texas 6, West Virginia 2
#12 Virginia 16, Georgia Tech 3
NC State 12, #13 Clemson 10
#23 Nebraska 3, Penn State 1
UC Irvine 12, UC Riverside 4
Rice 26, UAB 17 (this is not a typo)
Dallas Baptist 17, Evansville 6 (7 innings)
Murray State 14, UT-Martin 4
#18 Arizona 3, Arizona State 1
#11 Stanford 8, Washington 4
Auburn 9, Ole Miss 1
#24 Texas A&M 5, #17 Arkansas 2
#10 LSU 11, #8 Mississippi State 5
#5 Florida 14, #6 Kentucky 3
Stephen F. Austin 3, Houston Baptist 1
Stephen F. Austin 11, Houston Baptist 10
Texas A&M - Corpus Christi 10, Abilene Christian 4
UT Arlington 12, Texas State 5
Sacramento State 13, UT Rio Grande Valley 6
It was a good day for TCU as teams they were pulling for went 14-8. However, the most important game was in Lubbock, where Kansas couldn’t take down Tech. The Jayhawks will have one more chance tomorrow to take one from Tech, which would give TCU the outright Big 12 regular season title and the #1 seed on Oklahoma City next week.