Frogs rally for doubleheader sweep, top UCSB 8-5
March 31, 2007
FORT WORTH, Texas - A four-run two-out rally in the bottom of the eighth inning helped No. 26 TCU overcome a 5-4 deficit to defeat UC Santa Barbara Saturday night at Lupton Stadium. With the win, the Frogs sweep the doubleheader and move to 13-0 at home this season. Andrew Walker had a big day at the plate with two home runs and three RBIs. Austin Adams' double in the eighth gave the Frogs the lead.
Having squandered multiple opportunities to tie the game or take the lead, the Frogs finally broke through in the eighth with two outs off of the Gauchos' closer, Justin Segal. Ben Carruthers got the rally started with a one-out single. A Bryan Kervin base hit put runners on the corners with just one out. Segal came up with a big strikeout, but hit Keith Conlon with the pitch to load the bases. Adams came through doubling to center field and driving in two runs. An errant pickoff throw by Segal sailed into center field and the Frogs picked up two big insurance runs. Sam Demel (3-1) pitched a perfect ninth inning to nail down the victory.
As they did in the first game of the day, the Gauchos got off to the early 1-0 lead. Chris Fox led off the game with a walk and stole two bases to move to third with just one out. Robbie Blauer doubled down the right field line to give UCSB the lead.
TCU took its first led of the game in the bottom of the second on a long home run off the bat of Walker. Corey Steglich opened the inning with a base knock and scored on the home run. Steven Trout made it a two-run game in the third with his second home run of the season and after three the Frogs led 3-1.
UC Santa Barbara tied the game in the fourth, scoring two runs on three hits. Back-to-back doubles to start the inning from Chris McMurray and Brian Gump cut the TCU lead in half. After a failed pickoff attempt moved Gump to third, Shane Carlson singled to knot the game at three.
Two more runs came around for the Gauchos in the fifth as they regained the lead. Mike Zuanich smoked a lead-off triple and scored on a one out single by Gump. A passed ball allowed Matt Anderson to score, giving UCSB the 5-3 lead. Tyler Lockwood came on in relief of Jake Arrieta with two on and got Fox to ground out to end the inning.
The Frogs looked poised to tie the game or take the lead in the bottom of the fifth as they had runners on second and third with nobody out. Trout walked to open the inning and moved to second on a Conlon base hit. A double steal moved both runners up 90 feet, but they would get no further as Gaucho starter Chuck Huggins retired the next three batters to preserve the 5-3 lead.
TCU began to inch back into the game in the sixth. Walker made it a one-run game with his second long ball of the evening to make the score 5-4.
Lockwood shut the door on the Gauchos offense, twirling 2 1/3 innings of scoreless baseball. He surrendered just two hits, walked one and struck out two before giving way to Demel in the eighth.
Demel retired three of the four batters he faced in the eighth, setting up the Frogs four-run eighth inning. He earned his third win of the season with two scoreless innings. He struck out three and walked one.
The Frogs improved to 20-8 on the season with the win. They will go for the series sweep on Sunday afternoon beginning at 1 p.m. at Lupton Stadium. Chance Corgan will take the mound for TCU.