Jared Janczak battled valiantly but Arkansas ends TCU’s season

Jared Janczak turned in another heroic start for TCU, but it wasn’t enough against Arkansas Sunday night.

The Razorbacks, the No. 5 national seed, scored three in the first inning and shut down the the Horned Frogs 6-0 to win the Fayetteville Regional at Baum-Walker Stadium.

The loss ends the season for TCU (34-28), which rallied late in the season to earn an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament despite 12 significant injuries to key players. The Razorbacks advance to host a three-game series against Ole Miss in the super regionals.

After a rough first inning, Janczak settled in and held the Arkansas (44-17) scoreless over the next 3 2/3 innings. He retired six consecutive batters and 12 of the next 14 after allowing three consecutive one-out hits, including a two-run double off the left-center field wall from Dominic Fletcher in the first inning. Jack Kenley scored Fletcher with a double to push the lead to 3-0.

In the fifth, however, Matt Goodheart jumped on a breaking ball for a two-run homer to stretch the Razorbacks’ lead to 5-0 and knock Janczak from the game. Janczak allowed five runs on seven hits in 4 2/3 innings. He struck out eight and walked none.

“There wasnt anything speical to it, I was just doing what I was supposed to,” Janczak said of his recovery. “The slider wasn’t where it normally was and [Goodheart] put a good swing on it. I tip my hat to him.”

It was an admirable finish to Janczak’s TCU career. It was the 50th start of his career, but only the 10th this season after he struggled early while still recovering from multiple surgeries in 2018. Schlossnagle credited Janczak’s 12-strikeout performance in the Big 12 tournament for helping the Frogs earn a postseason berth despite a less than elite record. TCU lost 28 games for only the second time in Schlossnagle’s 16 seasons.

“He’s as good a pitcher there has ever been at TCU,” Schlossnagle said. “He’s given this program way more than we’ve given him. I’m forever grateful. It was an honor to coach him for the past five years.”

TCU beat Central Connecticut 9-5 Sunday afternoon in an elimination game to reach the regional championship Sunday night. If TCU had beaten Arkansas Sunday night, the teams would have played again at 6 p.m. Monday.

Arkansas freshman left-hander Patrick Wicklander held the Frogs scoreless on three hits over five innings. Against Wicklander, TCU only threatened once. Johnny Rizer and Zach Humphreys singled and double with two outs in the fourth but Wicklander got Andrew Keefer to pop out to preserve a 3-0 lead. Cody Scroggins was just as tough out of the bullpen. He held the Frogs scoreless on two hits over 2 2/3 innings of relief. TCU batters struck out 13 times and were held to five hits.

Augie Mihlbauer held Arkansas to a run on three hits in three innings of relief.

“TCU is one of the better teams we’ve played this year,” Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn said. “Overall, I thought this field of four teams was one of the toughest in the country.”

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Stefan Stevenson has been covering sports for the Star-Telegram since 1997. He spent five years covering TCU athletics, which included two BCS bowls, two trips to the college World Series and the move to the Big 12. He has covered the Texas Rangers since 2014 and started reporting on the Dallas Cowboys in 2016.