TCU improves chances for at-large bid with one-hitter

Posted Saturday, May. 19, 2012  comments  Print Reprints
A

Watch video

San Diego State at No. 20 TCU

(at Lupton Stadium)

Game 1: SDSU 3, TCU 0

Game 2: TCU 4, SDSU 0

Game 3: 1 p.m. today

TV: The Mtn.

Radio: KTCU/88.7 FM

Records: SDSU 24-31, 12-11; TCU 34-17, 17-6

Have more to add? News tip? Tell us

TCU's chances of winning its final outright Mountain West Conference title were moot before the Horned Frogs' game began Saturday.

But behind freshman Preston Morrison's first-career complete game, the Frogs defeated San Diego State 4-0 and can claim a share of the MWC regular-season title with a win in today's regular-season finale.

New Mexico finished a sweep of last-place Air Force on Saturday to clinch a share of the title and secure the top seed in the MWC tournament next week in Las Vegas by virtue of a tiebreaker over TCU.

With a win today, TCU would finish at 18-6, tied with New Mexico, but the Lobos were 5-1 against San Diego State, the second-place team. The Frogs, with a win today, would finish 4-2 against the Aztecs, giving the edge to New Mexico in the tiebreaker.

TCU opens the MWC tournament against San Diego State at 5 p.m. Thursday at Earl E. Wilson Stadium in Las Vegas. The Lobos play bottom-seeded UNLV at 9 p.m. in the double-elimination tournament.

The tournament winner earns an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. TCU (34-17, 17-6) is likely to earn an at-large bid with a Ratings Percentage Index ranking in the low 30s as of Saturday.

"Right now, it's just a matter of winning games, because we want to put ourselves in a position where we don't have to win the tournament," TCU coach Jim Schlossnagle said. "That's always the goal in this program for the regular season, to put ourselves in a position to be an at-large team in the NCAA Tournament."

Morrison's gem may have put the Frogs in that position, barring a collapse in Las Vegas. Morrison pitched the first one-hit complete game for TCU since Derek Lee against Baylor in 1996. Kyle Winkler and Erik Miller combined on one for TCU last season.

Morrison hasn't allowed a run in his last 19 2/3 innings and improved to 9-0.

"I had trouble getting inside on them, especially with my fastball and sinker," Morrison said. "But I was able to mix my speeds and keep everything in line."

Morrison was in trouble only once. After a hit batter and single gave the Aztecs two on with no outs in the second, he forced two groundouts and a flyout to end the inning. He retired the next 21 batters, retiring the side in order from the third through the eighth inning, until an error in the ninth and finished with five strikeouts and no walks.

"Those short innings didn't really take much effort -- I loved it," Morrison said. "It's a credit to my defense."

Kyle Von Tungeln was 4 for 5 at the plate with two RBIs, including a run-scoring double in the third that gave TCU a 1-0 lead.

The Frogs added two more runs in the fifth on four hits, including three consecutive hits by Josh Elander, Jason Coats and Jantzen Witte. TCU collected 16 hits, the third-most this season.

Stefan Stevenson

817-390-7760

Twitter: @FollowtheFrogs

Looking for comments?

We welcome your comments on this story, but please be civil. Do not use profanity, hate speech, threats, personal abuse or any device to draw undue attention. Our policy requires those wishing to post here to use their real identity.

Our commenting policy | Facebook commenting FAQ | Why Facebook?





Tuesday, September 30Full Scoreboard
Oakland 9/30 8:07 PM ET
Kansas City TV: TBS
Full Scoreboard
Tuesday, September 30Full Scoreboard
No games today
Full Scoreboard
Week 5Full Scoreboard
Thursday
Minnesota 8:25 PM ET
Green Bay TV: CBS/NFL Network
Sunday
Chicago 1:00 PM ET
Carolina TV: FOX
Houston 1:00 PM ET
Dallas TV: CBS
Buffalo 1:00 PM ET
Detroit TV: FOX
Baltimore 1:00 PM ET
Indianapolis TV: CBS
Pittsburgh 1:00 PM ET
Jacksonville TV: CBS
Tampa Bay 1:00 PM ET
New Orleans TV: FOX
Atlanta 1:00 PM ET
NY Giants TV: FOX
St. Louis 1:00 PM ET
Philadelphia TV: FOX
Cleveland 1:00 PM ET
Tennessee TV: CBS
Arizona 4:05 PM ET
Denver TV: FOX
NY Jets 4:25 PM ET
San Diego TV: CBS
Kansas City 4:25 PM ET
San Francisco TV: CBS
Cincinnati 8:30 PM ET
New England TV: NBC
Monday
Seattle 8:30 PM ET
Washington TV: ESPN
Full Scoreboard
Tuesday, September 30Full Scoreboard
NY Rangers 9/30 7:00 PM ET
Philadelphia TV: MSG, TCN-PHI
NY Islanders 9/30 7:00 PM ET
Boston TV: NESN, NHL Network
Ottawa 9/30 8:00 PM ET
Winnipeg TV: TSN3, TSN5
Carolina 9/30 8:00 PM ET
St. Louis 
Tampa Bay 9/30 8:30 PM ET
Dallas 
Colorado 9/30 9:00 PM ET
Calgary 
Los Angeles 9/30 10:30 PM ET
San Jose 
Full Scoreboard