The Horned Frogs were unable to sustain an early lead – or any offense – Tuesday night as TCU fell to Texas State 5-1.TCU (2-2) benefitted from shaky starting pitching and jumped out to an early 1-0 lead but fell victim to an opportunistic Texas State (2-5) offense as the game progressed. The Frogs also had no answer for the Bobcats’ bullpen, and Texas State pitchers retired the last 19 TCU batters.
Head coach Jim Schlossnagle said the team was simply outplayed.
“I thought their pitchers pitched better than ours,” Schlossnagle said. “We hit balls right to them.”
After a quiet first inning, the Frogs managed to break open the scoring in the bottom of the second due to poor early pitching by Bobcats starter Kyle Gembler. Junior outfielder Keith Conlon reached first base on a walk, then Gembler threw two wild pitches to advance him to third. Freshman catcher/outfielder Hunt Woodruff managed to bring Conlon home off a hit to deep left field but was called out while trying to turn the hit into a triple.
The Bobcats mounted a rally in the top of the fourth inning, scoring three runs on four hits and forcing TCU sophomore starter Zach Ashwood to leave the game. Freshman Eric Marshall came in from the bullpen but was unable to escape the inning without outfielder Luke Cannon reaching home on a single by freshman infielder Adam Witek.
Texas State managed to stretch its lead in the fifth inning when senior infielder Cody Merrell homered off Marshall. It would be Marshall’s last pitch – and the game’s final score – of the evening; junior pitcher Omar Arif was called in to close the inning, but TCU did not produce another hit all night.
Ashwood said the Frogs struggled to effectively vary their pitches, enabling the Bobcats to pick their pitches.
“It got to a point where we weren’t throwing strikes on any off-speed pitches,” Ashwood said, “and they were just sitting on fastballs.”
Although Schlossnagle said his team was prepared, nothing in sports is scripted.
“I think our guys were ready to play,” Schlossnagle said. “Baseball is a humbling game.