FINAL: TCU 7, Ole Miss 4
The Rebels chased Preston Morrison but had no answer for Justin Scharf. The TCU reliever wound up being the MVP of the regional. He did a number on the Rebels, entering in the fifth inning.
Scharf gave up an inherited run on a Zach Kirksey SAC fly but after that, the Rebels did get a ball in the air until an Auston Bousfield single with two outs in the eighth.
The sidewinder kept them hitting everything on the ground, and he had the defense behind him to make that work. Scharf threw 1.2 scoreless innings against the Rebels in relief of Brandon Finnegan Sunday night. The Rebels didn’t score against him until the ninth inning tonight. By then he had a four run lead, and he quickly ended the game with another ground ball, a double play off the bat Alex Yarbrough.
The Rebels scored in the first when Tanner Mathis opened with a double and came home on a ground ball by Matt Snyder.
They missed a great chance in the second with two on and one out, but Sikes Orvis was picked off at third base.
Ole Miss remained within striking distance until the seventh when TCU scored two runs following an outfield error by Kirksey that left runners at second and third. That chased Mike Mayers, and the Frogs pounced on Tanner Bailey with three straight hits. Bailey recovered and limited further damage, but the two inherited runs scored, and it was 7-3.
Both starting pitchers were working on short rest. Bobby Wahl was strong early with just one hit allowed and five strikeouts through three innings. When he lost it, he lost it quickly and that was in the fifth. He finished a 4.1-inning stint with five hits, four earned runs. Wahl had not allowed more than two earned runs in a start since March 23 at Alabama when he also gave up four, his season high.
One game for the College Station Regional championship.
The Rebels will be the visiting team. Bobby Wahl and Preston Morrison will be the starting pitchers, a rematch of the regional opener when Wahl threw 118 pitches in seven innings, and RJ Hively closed the game, a 6-2 Ole Miss win.
The key there is the six. Offense. The Rebels had it, though it took them until the sixth inning to scratch and tie the game against Morrison.
The regional has played out the way I thought it would. Ole Miss had a very good chance for success here if it could produce a few runs – not a ton of runs – and that’s what the Rebels did the first two days, beating TCU 6-2 and Texas A&M 6-3. Two runs doesn’t get it done. If the Rebels revert to their Vanderbilt and SEC tournament level of productivity the season will likely conclude tonight.
If Wahl can pull off a Drew Pomeranz imitation and get a little run support, they could very well advance to the super regional round at UCLA, the No. 2 national seed.
CF Kyle Von Tungeln .299
C Josh Elander .314
1B Kevin Cron .357
3B Jantzen Witte .314
2B Derek Odell .282
LF Jerrick Suiter .316
DH Josh Gonzales .255
RF Brance Rivera .220
SS Keaton Jones .174
RHP Preston Morrison 9-1, 1.80, 105.0 IP, 10 BB, 69 SO, .204 Opp BA
RF Tanner Mathis .353
2B Alex Yarbrough .384
1B Matt Snyder .336
LF Zach Kirksey .285
CF Auston Bousfield .281
DH Sikes Orvis .231
C Wll Allen .298
3B Andrew Mistone .237
SS Jake Overbey .194
RHP Bobby Wahl 7-3, 2.28, 94.2 IP, 31 BB, 99 SO, .207 Opp. BA