The Horned Frogs continued their streak of hitting the ball and getting on base, but they couldn’t continue their small winning streak of two games against the Utah Utes Sunday.The Frogs collected 10 hits in the ballgame, but couldn’t get the timely hit when it mattered the most. Nine men were left on base in a game the Frogs lost 6-3.
Senior centerfielder Ryan Pack said he and his teammates know why they lost and will not dwell on it too much in going into next weekend’s home series with University of Texas-Pan American.
“We just didn’t hit with guys on base,” Pack said. “We had 10 hits, and I know last night we doubled that, but 10 hits is usually pretty good. We just didn’t come through with clutch hits at critical times tonight.”
Pack couldn’t get going personally either. He was twice hit by a pitch and popped up his attempted bunt to the pitcher in the sixth inning.
Junior infielder Steven Trout contributed two RBIs on the day and junior outfielder Austin Adams had four hits. Utah scored runs on TCU pitcher Sam Demel (5-5) in the third, fourth and fifth innings.
Demel worked six innings, giving up five runs. When Demel left the game, the score was 5-3 in favor of Utah. Junior pitcher Donald Furrow then gave up one run in 1 1/3 innings of action.
The ball was then put into the hands of senior reliever Shawn Ferguson, who continued his impressive play for the Frogs and pitched 1 2/3 perfect innings in relief.
Ferguson said he was pleased with his effort, but that it would have been a better feeling if the team had won.
“It was good for me because I haven’t been throwing that much lately, and it really gave me a lot of confidence,” Ferguson said. “I just wish we could have scored some more runs. We looked a little flat at the plate today.”
Head coach Jim Schlossnagle said Ferguson’s play of late has been exceptional.
“He was the highlight today and in the Dallas Baptist game a couple days ago,” Schlossnagle said. “This is the best he has pitched since he’s been in college and we’re going to need that down the stretch.”
Ferguson said the stretch run is what matters most for the Frogs.
“We’ve got to get on a roll, because for us to make regional we have to win the conference tournament,” Ferguson said. “We had a little stint where we were hot in the middle of the year, but we’ve got to get hot now at the end. It’s not how you start but how you finish.”
The Frogs (28-21; 14-5) move on from this game with Utah (23-22; 6-10) and will start trying to warm up next when they host UTPA in their weekend series starting Friday.