Frogs Pick Up Record 40th Win, Top Southern Miss 13-7
May 28, 2005
Hattiesburg, Miss. - The No. 27 TCU Horned Frogs earned their school-record 40th win of the season, eliminating Southern Miss from the Conference USA Tournament with a 13-7 win. The win puts TCU in the C-USA Tournament Championship game for the second straight year. The Frogs rallied from a 3-0 deficit to win their third straight contest. Spencer Jackson drove in three runs off the bench, including a pinch-hit home run in the eighth inning. Bo Cogbill also drove in three with a 2-for-3 day at the plate.
The Golden Eagles ended their scoring drought against the Frogs in the second inning, jumping out to a 1-0 lead. With the bases loaded via two walks and a base hit, Frog starter Tim McGough (7-3) threw a wild pitch to give Southern Miss the 1-0 lead. Despite the troubles, McGough struck out Trey Sutton to end the inning.
The third inning got off to an ominous start as McGough plunked Kevin Coker on the batting helmet to lead off the inning. Marc Maddox made it hurt, homering to straight center and giving the Golden Eagles the 3-0 lead.
TCU came alive in the top of the fourth inning to take a lead they would never relinquish. Chad Huffman started the rally with a one-out walk and Matt McGuirk reached on an infield single. Keith Conlon bounced back to the pitcher, who threw the ball away trying to get McGuirk at second base. With the bases loaded, Austin Adams came up big, delivering a two-RBI single through the left side. Cogbill gave the Frogs a 4-3 lead with a two-out hit to left field.
A five-run fifth inning busted the game open. The Eagles used three pitchers to try and stop the bleeding in the inning. Stuart Musslewhite led the inning off with his fifth home run of the season to make it a 5-3 contest, ending USM starter, John Nicholas' day. A Conlon two-out double plated Shelby Ford and Matt Carpenter drove in two with the second double of the inning. Cogbill rounded out the scoring with another double to give the Frogs a commanding 9-3 lead.
The Golden Eagles began to mount a comeback in the seventh inning, taking advantage of two TCU errors and three hits. Southern Miss pushed across three runs in the inning, all of which were unearned to close the gap to 9-6. With the go-ahead run at the plate, Chad Underwood induced a fly ball off the bat of Coker to end the inning.
TCU and Southern Miss traded runs in the eighth inning to make it a 10-7 contest going into the ninth. Jackson blasted his first career home run over the scoreboard in left center to lead off the eighth, while Trey Cuevas picked up an RBI single for the Golden Eagles.
The Frogs put the game out of reach in the top of the ninth, scoring three runs on three hits and one costly error in the outfield. Ford reached on a two-base error by left fielder Maddox. Andrew Walker laced a single through a drawn-in infield to make it 11-7 and Jackson delivered a two-RBI single through the left side to account for the final score.
Shawn Ferguson and Chase Perry closed the door in the bottom of the ninth to propel the Frogs into the Championship game. McGough went five innings, allowing three runs on four hits. He walked five and struck out six to earn his first win since April 23.
The Frogs (40-18) will meet the No. 1 Tulane Green Wave on Sunday in the championship game. The game is slated for a 1:00 p.m. start at Pete Taylor Park in Hattiesburg, Miss. Brad Furnish will take the mound and face Tulane's Billy Mohl. To see the list of television stations carrying the game, log on to www.conferenceusa.com.
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