Conner Shepherd saved the Frogs on Friday night. After TCU battled back from a 4-0 deficit, Shepherd hit the go-ahead solo home run in the eighth inning to give the Frogs a 5-4 lead and, ultimately, the win.
The Frogs improved to 8-1 on the season with the win.
Shepherd now has three home runs through the first nine games, as TCU has been hammering the baseball early in the season. But while Shepherd’s blast might have stolen the night, there are a few other guys who were key to the win tonight.
Porter Brown worked a 14-pitch walk in the fifth inning, as TCU was trying to climb out of a 4-0 hole. He battled for almost 10 minutes, eventually getting on base and forcing Zach Humphreys home to make it 4-2.
Tommy Sacco, Austin Henry, and Phillip Sikes also drove runs in for the Frogs, who saw 58 pitches from three Cal arms in the fifth inning, eventually drawing to within 4-3 before leaving the bases loaded.
Johnny Ray got his third start of the season, going five innings and striking out six, while allowing three earned runs. Ray now has 20 strikeouts through 18.2 innings pitched this season.
Meanwhile, lefty Haylen Green made his fourth appearance of the season, and he notched 2.2 more scoreless innings. The senior has yet to allow a run in relief this season.
Cal fell to 3-6 with the loss, and the projected-middle-of-the-pack Pac-12 team is stumbling out of the gate early on.
The two teams take the field again tomorrow, with Charles King taking the mound for the Frogs, who look to clinch their third straight series to open the season.