“I just want to get to 701 as quick as possible,” Schlossnagle said. It was his 623rd win as the head coach at TCU.
The team’s bounce-back victory after a 15-2 loss to UC-Irvine last Sunday was headlined by their hitting prowess.
Left fielder Josh Watson’s three-run home run in the bottom of the first inning gave the Horned Frogs a 3-0 lead that they would never relinquish.
Second baseman Coby Boulware then scored from first on a double from right fielder Connor Wanhanen to extend the team’s lead to four in the bottom of the second.
After starting pitcher Charles King had four strikeouts in the first three innings, UT-Rio Grande Valley began the fourth inning with back-to-back hits, and shortstop Ivan Estrella scored from third on a sacrifice groundout by first baseman Austin Siener.
The Horned Frogs responded in the bottom of the fourth with back-to-back home runs from first baseman Luken Baker and left fielder Josh Watson to give the team a 7-1 lead.
“The difference in the game was the power– the home runs,” Schlossnagle said. “We only out-hit them by two, the difference was the three homers.”
Baker and Watson have now combined for six home runs in the team’s first 11 games and Watson is batting .462.
“I’m sticking to my approach and plan at the plate and just continuing to get pitches to hit that are in my zone and putting good swings on them,” Watson said.
Schlossnagle praised Watson’s abilities at the plate this season and how it forces teams to pitch to one of the best hitters in college baseball– Luken Baker.
“Can’t say any more than we already said,” Schlossnagle said. “We had a runner on third base and two outs, Luken Baker up, and they had to pitch to him and he hit a home run.”
All four pitchers that came on in relief of King would record a strikeout as the team struck out a season-high 16 opposing batters. Sophomore Jake Eissler and junior Durbin Feltman struck out six of the seven batters they faced. First-year James Notary also struck out a batter in his one inning of relief.
“I thought we made better pitches,” Schlossnagle said when comparing his team’s performance to Sunday’s loss. “We executed some good pitches, I thought Notary was really good, Feltman was awesome, and that was good to see.”
The team wrapped up their eight-game homestand with the win and will travel to California to participate in the Dodger Stadium College Baseball Classic this weekend.
The Horned Frogs will play USC Friday at 8 p.m., UCLA Saturday at 9 p.m., and Vanderbilt Sunday at 12:30 p.m.