Cal State Fullerton Rallies To Hand TCU Tough 2-1 Loss

Feb. 27, 2011

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FORT WORTH, Texas - No. 12 Cal State Fullerton rallied for two late runs to earn the series victory with a 2-1 win over No. 3 TCU Sunday afternoon at Lupton Stadium. The Titans tallied a run each in the eighth and ninth innings to earn the victory. Andrew Mitchell continued his impressive campaign with five shutout innings and Jimmie Pharr tallied two hits to lead the offense.

Mitchell turned in his second solid start this week, allowing one hit, three walks and striking out two. Trent Appleby (0-1) took the loss after allowing two runs on six hits with a walk and three strikeouts.

Mitchell had to wiggle out of trouble in the early innings, but made the pitches he needed to get out of the jams. After the lead-off hitter reached on a walk in the second, Brett Johnson made a fantastic catch leaning over the dugout for the first out of the inning. Johnson then started an inning-ending double play to keep the game scoreless.

The Titans again looked poise to score and again, the Frogs defense bailed them out. Zach Tanida walked to lead off the third inning and moved to third on an errant throw on a sacrifice attempt. Mitchell got Richy Pedroza to pop up for the first out. Trajano lined the ball sharply to the outfield right at Aaron Schultz, who made the catch then threw a strike to home plate to erase Tanida as he tried to give the Titans the lead.

TCU finally got on the board in the fifth inning, scoring its lone run of the game on a pair of hits. Johnson stroked a triple to left field with one out and scored easily on a double off the bat of Pharr to make it a 1-0 game.

Fullerton put together a furious rally in the eighth to get the game knotted at one and looked poised to take the lead, but the Frogs defense to the occasion. With one out Pedroza singled and Trajano followed with another hit to put two on. Nick Ramirez lined the ball down the right field line for a double that tied the game at one.

After an intentional walk loaded the bases, Appleby came all the way back from a 3-0 count to strike out Walker Moore for the second out. Johnson made a diving stop on a base hit bid by Joe Terry and threw the ball to Appleby covering first to leave the bases loaded, preserving the 1-1 tie.

A lead-off double in the ninth by Anthony Hutting came around to score on a base hit by Michael Lorenzen as Cal State Fullerton took its first lead of the game.

TCU had a chance in the ninth, but the Titans brought on their closer and he struck out the final two batters of the game to preserve the win.

The Horned Frogs fall to 4-3 on the season. TCU will wrap up a four-game homestand Tuesday night when it hosts Dallas Baptist. Stefan Crichton will get the start for the Frogs. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m.

Game Notes:
• The series loss for the Horned Frogs was the first for TCU since dropping a 2-1 series to San Diego State March 27-29, 2009. That broke a string of 19 straight regular-season series victories.
Brance Rivera extended his hitting streak to seven games.
Andrew Mitchell has not surrendered a run in his last 13 innings pitched.
• The series attendance for the weekend was 14,819. It is the second-largest series attendance in stadium history.

TCU Head Coach Jim Schlossnagle
On the game:

"The game is testing us right now. We did not get the two bunts down, but we did get the tying runner to second base with one out. They were able to make the pitches in the ninth inning."

"The last two days have been two really good games. Yesterday I did not think we were aggressive at the plate, but today I thought we were. There was some outstanding pitching out here in this series."

"The whole season is about how you handle adversity, I told the guys that you can either fold or rise up and make it part of our story."

TCU Freshman Pitcher Andrew Mitchell
On the game:
"I hate losing those close games, but we will come together and be ready for DBU on Tuesday. We are upset we lost, but we know how good we are and we will be able to turn it around."

TCU Freshman Brett Johnson
On his first start:

"It was a great feeling out there today, I have been waiting for my opportunity to prove that I can be apart and help out the team. It is fun to be on a team where it is team based and not individually based attitudes."



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