Late Outburst Propels TCU Past UTA
Feb. 11, 2003
FORT WORTH, Texas - TCU exploded for four runs in the seventh inning and three more in the eighth to break a 4-4 tie and propel the Horned Frogs past Texas-Arlington 11-4 Tuesday afternoon at Lupton Stadium and Williams-Reilly Field. The win avenged a 5-3 season-opening loss to UTA for the Frogs, who have won four in a row since dropping that contest.
With the bases loaded, no one out and the game still tied at 4-4 in the bottom of the seventh, TCU shortstop Shaff Elkouri (Norman, Okla./Asher) executed a safety squeeze bunt, allowing Jake Duncan (Marshall, Texas/Marshall) to score from third to put the Frogs up 5-4.
From there, the flood gates opened as left fielder Chris Meeks (Brownwood, Texas/Brownwood) drilled a two-run double to left field and designated hitter Sean Stephens (DeSoto, Texas/DeSoto) plated another run with an RBI single up the middle, giving TCU (4-1) an 8-4 lead heading into the eighth.
In the bottom of the eighth, the Horned Frogs continued the onslaught, tacking on three more runs to make it 11-4. The big hit came from redshirt freshman Nate Thomas (West Palm Beach, Fla./Kings Academy), who roped an RBI double down the right field in his first collegiate at-bat.
Right-hander Ryan Nesloney (Houston, Texas/Jersey Village) tossed 1.2 innings of hitless relief to pick up his first win of the season.
TCU third baseman Mike Settle (Fort Worth, Texas/Country Day) blasted his second home run of the season in the third inning, giving the Horned Frogs a 4-2 lead before the Mavericks rallied to tie it in the top of the seventh.
Also enjoying big days for the Frogs were first baseman Chris Saenz (Fort Worth, Texas/Arlington Heights), who went 3-for-5 with two runs scored in his first start as a Horned Frog, and catcher Justin Hatcher (Fort Worth, Texas/Brewer), who raised his team-leading batting average to .500 with a 3-for-4 performance. Preseason all-American Terry Trofholz (Plano, Texas/Plano Senior) also added his first three-hit game of the campaign, going 3-for-4 and walking twice.
The Horned Frogs will take their show to the road for the first time in 2003 this weekend when they travel to Southeastern Louisiana. The first contest of the three-game series is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Friday in Hammond, La.