TCU Rolls Past West Virginia, 8-1
May 25, 2018
OKLAHOMA CITY – Six runs in its final two at-bats helped TCU break open a tight game en route to an 8-1 victory over West Virginia on Thursday night. The Horned Frogs advance in the winner’s bracket and will have Friday off. Once again, A.J. Balta spurred the TCU offense with his second straight four-RBI game.
A lead-off triple from Johnny Rizer got things going for the Frogs in the second. Zach Humphreys hit a sacrifice fly to left and Rizer scored easily for a 1-0 lead.
In the fourth a lead-off hit batter helped the Mountaineers tie the game. With two in scoring position and one out, Ivan Gonzalez grounded out to make it a 1-1 ballgame.
TCU battled back and regained the lead in the fifth. Adam Oviedo opened the frame with a base hit. One-out singles from Coby Boulware and Josh Watson loaded the bases. Balta came through with his first sacrifice fly to make it a 2-1 game.
In the seventh, TCU broke the game open with four runs on three hits. Conner Shepherd was plunked to start the inning. A walk to Boulware followed and a Watson base hit had the bases loaded. Balta smoked a ball to left for a two-run double and a 4-1 lead. Michael Landestoy followed with a two-run single through a drawn-in infield to make it 6-1.
The Frog added two more runs in the eighth on a Balta sacrifice fly and a wild pitch.
Sean Wymer (6-3) started for the Frogs and turned in five strong innings. He allowed a run on six hits and struck out four. Jake Eissler tossed three scoreless innings. He allowed two hits, walked two and struck out three. Durbin Feltman struck out the side following a lead-off walk in the ninth.
Stat of the Game
4 – For the second straight game, A.J. Balta drove in four runs. He went 1-for-2 at the plate with a double and a pair of sacrifice flies. The graduate transfer has 8 RBIs in the first two games of the Big 12 Tournament.
• TCU advances in the winner’s bracket for the seventh time in program history and the third time since joining the Big 12 in 2012.
• TCU improved to 39-15 in conference tournaments under head coach Jim Schlossnagle.
• TCU is 45-29 all-time in conference tournaments.
• TCU is now 14-7 in Big 12 Tournament play.
• TCU played errorless baseball for the 22nd time this season.
• TCU turned multiple double plays (3) in a game for the 11th time this season.
• TCU held an opponent to two or fewer runs for the 18th time this season.
• TCU scored first for the 30th time this season.
• For the 12th time this season, TCU drew more walks (7) than it struck out (6).
• TCU stole multiple bases in a game for the 22nd time this season.
• The TCU pitching staff tallied double-digit strikeouts for the 27th time this season.
• A.J. Balta, Johnny Rizer and Conner Shepherd have reached safely in 10 straight games.
• Balta collected his 13th multi-RBI game of the season and the 37th of his career.
• Michael Landestoy tallied his 12th multi-RBI game of the year and the 17th of his career.
• Josh Watson picked up his 18th multi-hit game of the season and the 48th of his career.
• Durbin Feltman made his first appearance on the mound since April 27 against Texas Tech.
• Feltman struck out the side for the fifth time this season.
With the victory, TCU improves to 32-22 overall. The Horned Frogs advance in the winner’s bracket where they will await the winner of Friday’s evening tilt between Texas Tech and West Virginia. Game time on Saturday is set for 12:30 p.m. and will be televised on FSSW+ or FCS.
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