Win Streak Reaches Four In 7-3 Win Over UT Arlington

Taylor Featherston and Jason Coats drove in five of the seven runs.

Taylor Featherston and Jason Coats drove in five of the seven runs.

March 8, 2011

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FORT WORTH, Texas - The No. 7 TCU Horned Frogs stretched its winning streak to four games with a 7-3 victory over UT Arlington Tuesday night at Lupton Stadium. Jason Coats tallied three hits and drove in two, while Taylor Featherston homered and collected two RBIs.

Stefan Crichton started and went 2 2/3 innings, allowing a run on four hits. Trent Appleby (1-1) picked up the win in relief after surrendering one run on two hits in 3 1/3 innings of work. He walked one and struck out two. Kyle Starratt allowed a run on three hits and struck out one in 1 1/3 innings. Erik Miller tallied his third save of the season with 1 2/3 scoreless innings. He gave up two hits and struck out two.

With one swing of the bat, Michael Guerra put the Mavericks up 1-0. The solo home run was came with one out in the first inning.

TCU wasted no time tying the game, as it picked up a run on one hit in the bottom of the frame. After retiring the first two batters quickly, Maverick starter Chase Weaver issued a four-pitch walk to Featherston. Coats unloaded on a Weaver offering to deep center and raced to third with a stand-up triple that drove in Featherston to tie the game at one.

The Frogs manufactured the go-ahead run in the bottom of the second. Aaron Schultz line a double down the left field line with one out. On the next pitch, he raced to third with his fourth stolen base of the season. Joe Weik delivered a sacrifice fly that put the Frogs up 2-1.

UT Arlington threatened to tie the game in the top of the third as it loaded the bases on two hits and a walk with two outs. Weik made a fantastic catch on a ball ticketed for the right field line off the bat of Greg McCall to end the inning and preserve the lead.

Featherston kept the scoring streak alive with a lead-off home run in the third inning. Jerome Pena hit a hustle-double to right center and moved to third on a ground out off the bat of Jimmie Pharr. A walk to Josh Elander kept the inning going and a balk by Kasey Merck gifted the Frogs their fourth run of the game.

The Frogs saw a golden opportunity to increase their lead in the fourth inning go by the wayside as they left the bases loaded. UT Arlington fed off the momentum and translated it into its second run of the game. Philip Incaviglia doubled to open the inning and moved to third on a bunt single by Ryan Walker. Guerra collected his second RBI of the game with a sacrifice fly that made it 4-2.

The lead shrunk to one in the top of the eighth inning as the Mavericks' Preston Beck hit a solo home run to right to make it a 4-3 contest.

Zac Jordan started the bottom of the eighth off with a sharply hit single to center. Weik was hit by the pitch to put two on with nobody out. Brance Rivera dropped down a sacrifice bunt to put both runners in scoring position. The Mavericks elected to intentionally walk Jantzen Witte to load the bases. Featherston beat out a potential double play ball to push the advantage to 5-3. Back-to-back wild pitches gave the Frogs a 6-3 lead and moved Featherston to third where he scored on a base hit by Coats.

Cody Dyvig singled and Brian Nephew doubled to put runners on second and third with nobody out to open the ninth inning. Miller buckled down and got Jake Pinchback to strike out, the induced a ground ball to third off the bat of Incaviglia for the second out. He put the nail in the coffin, getting Walker to line out to short to end the game.

TCU improves to 8-4 on the season. The Frogs will host Houston Baptist this weekend in a three game series that is slated to begin Friday night at 6:30 p.m.

Game Notes:
• Tonight's victory was the first win for the Frogs when they had trailed at some point in the game (1-0 going to the bottom of the first).
Brance Rivera stretched his hitting streak to 12 games, while Jerome Pena's reached 11.
• Both of Taylor Featherston's home runs have come at home and he now has a nine game hitting streak.
Jason Coats stretched his hitting streak and RBI streak to four straight games.
• With three stolen bases tonight, the Horned Frogs are 10-for-10 in the last four games.
• Michael Guerra's first inning home run was the first earned run allowed by Crichton this season. It broke a string of 10 1/3 innings without allowing an earned run.
• The Mavericks second pitcher of the night, Kasey Merck, is the younger brother of TCU junior Kaleb Merck.

Post Game Quotes:
TCU Head Coach Jim Schlossnagle
On what the plan was regarding the pitchers used in the game:

"Because of Matt Purke's blister situation, which hopefully is behind us now, we haven't been able to line up our starting pitchers the way we want. Stefan Crichton has been a reliever which is the role we want to see him in, but he was the best available pitcher to start the game. We wanted to throw him for three innings, Trent Appleby for two or three innings and it ended up working out almost perfectly."

On the catch Joe Weik made to end the top of the third:
"I just told my team that the difference in the game was defense. That catch was the play of the game; it was a difference of three runs. Brance Rivera's catch, Jimmie Pharr's throw to first base and Appleby's third-to-first pickoff were the difference in the game, especially when you get out hit. We made some pitches when we had to, too. I certainly am glad we scored those three runs in the bottom of the eighth inning, they looked big in the ninth inning."

TCU Outfielder Jason Coats
On getting his swing back, producing at the plate:
"I feel really good right now. Before we went to Texas Tech I worked with Coach Tony Vitello to fix some things. After that, I started feeling more comfortable throughout the weekend and this game and I just want to keep it going. I had been squaring balls up, but sometimes my approach was a little inconsistent. We looked at moving my hands back a bit, staying true to my approach and the results are showing."

 

 


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