Walk-off home run dooms TCU in 7-6 loss
March 29, 2008
LAS VEGAS, Nev. - A walk-off home run by Jarred Frierson completed a comeback for UNLV as it defeated TCU 7-6 Saturday afternoon at Earl E. Wilson Stadium. The Frogs had led 6-2 at one point, but the Rebels scored five runs in the final three innings to even the series at a game apiece. Clint Arnold tallied two hits and two RBIs in the loss, while Jimmie Pharr picked up two hits and three RBI in the contest.
The Frogs saw a golden opportunity to take an early lead go by the wayside in the top of the first inning. Ben Carruthers singled to lead off the game and moved to third on a long double off the bat of Bryan Kervin. UNLV starter Corey Hales got a shallow fly ball and then Bryan Holaday lined into a double play, doubling Kervin off of second.
The Rebels propelled the momentum into the bottom of the frame to take their first lead of the series. J.J. Sferra tripled to left center field to open the inning and scored on a ground out from Jesse Wight.
TCU got the game tied at one in the top of the second on a two-out base knock up the middle by Chris Ellington. Steve Ellington worked a lead-off walk and moved to second on a Matt Carpenter sacrifice. A throwing error by the shortstop on a ball hit by Jimmie Pharr allowed Steve Ellington to move to third where he scored on Chris Ellington's hit. A base hit by Carruthers looked like it would give the Frogs a lead, but a strike thrown to home by left fielder Ryan Thornton erased Pharr at the plate for the final out of the inning.
A three-run fourth inning for the Frogs broke a 1-1 tie to give TCU its first lead of the game. Matt Carpenter got things rolling with a base hit. He moved all the way to third on a misplay in right field and scored on a Pharr base hit to left field. Chris Ellington and Kervin singled to load the bases with two outs and Clint Arnold gave the Frogs a three-run lead with a two-run single to right field.
UNLV made it a 4-2 contest in the bottom of the inning as they took advantage of a lead-off bunt single from Wight. Xavier Scruggs followed with a double to put runners on the corners. Rance Roundy drove home the run with a sacrifice fly. The Frogs got out of the inning without any further damage on a strike `em out/throw `em out double play. TCU starter Sean Hoelscher froze Braden Walker looking and Holaday gunned out Scruggs trying to steal third.
TCU extended its lead in the top of the seventh, scoring twice on two hits. Holaday led off the inning with a double and Steve Ellington worked a walk to put two one. Carpenter laid down his second sacrifice of the game to move both runners into scoring position. Pharr came through with a two-run single to left center to give TCU a 6-2 lead.
The Rebels put up a three spot in the bottom of the frame to pull within one. Scruggs doubled and moved to third on a Roundy single. A balk brought him home ending Hoelscher's afternoon. Andrew Cashner struggled to find the strike zone as he hit a batter and walked another one to load the bases with no outs. Thornton was plunked to drive in the second run of the inning and Jarred Frierson hit a sacrifice fly to make it 6-5. Cashner froze Bryan Resnick at the plate for the second out and Holaday threw out Michael Brenly trying to score on a passed ball for the final out of the inning.
Hoelscher went six innings in the no-decision, allowing four runs on five hits. He struck out three and walked two in the longest outing of his career. Cashner (3-1) took the loss, allowing three runs (two earned) on two hits in 2 2/3 innings. He struck out three, walked one and hit two batters.
UNLV completed the comeback as it scored an unearned run in the bottom of the eighth inning. Sferra led off the inning with a bloop single into center. After a sacrifice moved him to second, he advanced to third on an error by Carruthers, putting runners on the corners. Roundy tied the game with a sacrifice fly to right.
The UNLV bullpen tossed two scoreless innings in the eighth and ninth to set up Frierson's walk-off two-out home run in the ninth.
The Frogs fall to 14-11 on the season and 2-3 in league play. Greg Holle will take the mound for the Frogs on Sunday in the series final. First pitch is slated for 3 p.m. (CST).