TCU beats Texas Tech at CWS on Baker's 9th-inning homer
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) -- Luken Baker hit a go-ahead three-run homer in the top of the ninth and TCU beat No. 5 national seed Texas Tech 5-3 on Sunday in a College World Series meeting of Big 12 rivals.
The Horned Frogs (48-16) trailed by a run after Hunter Hargrove's tiebreaking double in the bottom of the eighth. But after reliever Robert Dugger issued a walk to start the ninth and gave up a single to Evan Skoug, Baker sent a towering shot just inside the left-field foul pole into the seats above the bullpen.
Freshman closer Durbin Feltman came on and pitched a perfect ninth for his ninth save.
TCU, in the CWS for the third straight year, will play a Bracket 2 winners' game Tuesday night against the winner of Sunday night's game between Coastal Carolina and No. 1 Florida. The Red Raiders (46-19), who went 0-2 in 2014 in their only other CWS appearance, will try to stay alive against the Coastal Carolina-Florida loser on Tuesday afternoon.
Cam Warner homered for the third time in the NCAA Tournament and sixth time this season to put TCU up 2-1 in the fifth, but Tanner Gardner doubled in a run in the bottom half to tie it.
TCU reliever Brian Trieglaff retired eight straight batters before Corey Raley singled with one out in the eighth. After Tyler Neslone struck out and Raley stole second, Trieglaff intentionally walked Big 12 player of the year Eric Gutierrez. Hargrove followed with a hard shot down the left-field line to bring home the go-ahead run, ending Trieglaff's streak of 12 1/3 shutout innings over eight appearances.
Dugger (6-1), who had pitched 6 2/3 shutout innings in the NCAA Tournament, came on for the ninth and struggled. A walk to Austen Wade and Skoug's single set the stage for the 6-foot-4, 265-pound Baker to go deep for the 10th time this season.
Ryan Burnett (3-1) pitched a third of an inning and earned the win.
Tech, the Big 12's regular-season champion, had won two of three against the Frogs before Sunday. The teams didn't meet in the conference tournament, which TCU won.