Starting at 7 p.m. on Friday night, the No. 10 Horned Frogs begin their postseason against Siena at Lupton Stadium. Dallas Baptist University, Sam Houston State and the Saints all made the trip to Fort Worth for the tournament this weekend.
Hailing from upstate New York, the Siena Saints have never played TCU in baseball before and represent the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference or MAAC. Despite having an overall record of 26-31, the Saints won four straight in the MAAC tournament and defeated top-seeded Canisius 5-1 in the final game.
The Saints went 11-27 on the road this year, which included a sweep by a TCU mutual opponent in Michigan State. TCU dropped two of three to the Spartans.
Head coach Tony Rossi has spent 45 seasons at Siena and plans on sending lefty Matt Gage to the mound on Friday night.
“It’s definitely an honor to be called on in Game 1, especially against TCU,” Gage said. “It’s truly an honor to come out here and pitch Game 1.”
Gage, who holds an overall ERA of 4.81, started 15 games and finished with a record of 4-7.
TCU played the 40-19 Patriots twice this past season, winning both games. The first game in Fort Worth was a 15-inning marathon that resulted in a 5-4 win for the Horned Frogs. The second game, played at Dallas Baptist, was a 7-1 victory on April 8.
TCU is 41-23 against the Patriots all-time, but the Frogs have only played them once in the postseason. That game was in 2011 and DBU defeated the Frogs 3-2 in a NCAA Regional held in Fort Worth.
The Patriots are led by pitcher Cy Sneed. Sneed went 8-3 this year and capped off his regular season with an impressive Missouri Valley Conference Tournament run. He threw a complete game with 111 pitches, surrendering five hits and giving up only two runs. DBU defeated Missouri State 3-2 in that game.
The Texas Rangers selected Sneed in the 34th round of the 2011 Major League Baseball Draft.
SAM HOUSTON STATE
The Frogs and Bearkats met only once this year and the result was a 9-4 loss for TCU. The victory for the Bearkats was one of three in an impressive weekend were they took games from Texas Tech and Rice University at the Houston College Classic.
Sam Houston State finished the year with a record of 41-17 and a regular season title in the Southland Conference.
Junior pitcher Tyler Eppler will get the start for the Bearkats against Dallas Baptist on Friday. Eppler is 4-1 in his last five starts while posting a dominant ERA of 1.58. In his last five starts, Eppler has thrown at least seven innings each game.
Sam Houston State and Dallas Baptist play at 2:30 p.m. on Friday.
“That’s gonna be a phenomenal baseball game,” TCU head coach Jim Schlossnagle said. “People really need to come see Cy Sneed against Eppler tomorrow.”
Both games will be broadcasted on ESPN3.
Jordan Ray contributed to this story.