Frogs even out series with win against No. 19 Oklahoma State

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    Starting pitcher Preston Morrison may have felt out of sorts Saturday night, but that did not stop him from leading the No. 1 Frogs to a 7-4 win over No. 19 Oklahoma State in a rainy Lupton Stadium.

    After Friday’s loss at home, Morrison led TCU (17-3, 4-1 Big 12 Conference) to the win, breaking a school record in the meantime.

    With 388 1/3 innings, Morrison has now pitched more innings than any pitcher in TCU history. Clayton Jerome previously held the record with 386 innings. This was also win number 30 for Morrison’s career.

    Head coach Jim Schlossnagle said Morrison, whose season ERA is 1.15, was not at his best tonight.

    “Preston didn’t have his best stuff, but look what he did,” Schlossnagle said. “We needed him to pitch deep into the game.”

    Morrison said he was out of sorts for the first few innings until he found his fastball.

    The pitching squad for the Cowboys (15-7, 1-1), led by Tyler Buffett, struggled against the Frogs’ offense. The team went through four pitchers in the same time that Morrison remained on the mound for the Frogs.

    The Cowboys were first to score a run, but TCU was quick to bring batters home. TCU finished out the first inning 2-1 with both Cody Jones and Connor Wanhanen coming home.

    Right fielder Nolan Brown scored off Derek Odell’s hit in the second to make it 3-1.

    The third inning featured no runs for either team but a new pitcher for OSU, Tyler Nurdin.

    The Cowboys were the next to earn a run in the fifth inning when right fielder Conor Costello hit a pop fly to right field, bringing designated hitter Garrett McCain home.

    Catcher Evan Skoug’s grounder to center field in the bottom of the fifth brought Odell home and marked 17 straight games with a hit for Skoug.

    The Cowboys made another pitching change in the sixth, bringing in Kyle Bagnell. With two outs, bases loaded and a full count, Bagnell walked Wanhanen.

    The Frogs entered the seventh with the score at 5 to 2 and Morrison still on the mound.

    After OSU brought in its next pitcher, Carson LaRue, shortstop Keaton Jones hit a double just inside the foul line in right field to send Crain and Skoug home, putting the Frogs up 7-2.

    The Cowboys made their final statement in the eighth when first baseman Dustin Williams hit a two-run home run, receiving RBI’s for himself and catcher Gage Green.

    Morrison then left the mound to a stadium full of applause. Travis Evans took over to get one more out to finish out the inning.

    Trey Teakell stepped on the mound in the ninth and got the save.

    TCU, No. 1 in the Big 12 standings, and OSU, No. 4, stand at 1-1. The series will be decided Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m.

    Wanhanen said it felt great to even out the series.

    “We have to come out tomorrow with a lot of effort, a lot of energy,” Wanhanen said. “We have to finish this out.”