Less than a week after Adam Scott's dramatic playoff victory at the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial, Fort Worth sports fans enjoyed more drama and excitement about five minutes away at Lupton Stadium on the TCU campus. The Horned Frogs hosted the NCAA Fort Worth Regional college baseball tournament over the weekend, featuring top seed TCU, Dallas Baptist University, Sam Houston State and Sienna. The team surviving the double elimination format would be one step closer to the College World Series in Omaha.
TCU's 2-1 victory over Sienna on Friday that took 11 innings to decide was just the appetizer for a memorable weekend for the standing-room only crowds. The huge lawn to the west of the Bayard H. Friedman Tennis Center and most of the nearby streets were overflowing with cars, including many that were wedged in so tight many fans could not leave.
The parking lot scene featured several tailgating setups, including the same TCU trailer co-owned by 11 Horned Frogs that we spotted last week on Country Club Circle during the Colonial. Their tailgate was catered and had close to 100 fans gathered around prior to the first pitch.
"This is far and away the most crowded I have seen the stadium since the first game of 2011 after the Frogs went to the World Series," said longtime TCU baseball fan Bryan W., pointing to the packed lawn down the right field line. "We come to as many games as possible and it's great to see the support the Frogs are getting this weekend."
Saturday evening's instant classic between TCU and Sam Houston State also had a capacity crowd of 4,207, but this epic contest would end as the second-longest game in NCAA postseason history. TCU's Boomer White singled in Keaton Jones in the top of the 22nd inning to put the Frogs ahead for good. The final score of the near seven-hour contest, which ended around 2:30 a.m., was 3-2. The game actually began in May and ended in June.
By virtue of winning the marathon game Saturday night, the Frogs avoided having to play the elimination game against Sienna on Sunday afternoon at 2:30. Sam Houston beat Sienna, who had eliminated Dallas Baptist on Saturday, to set up a rematch with TCU. Yet another big crowd turned out to watch TCU, in much less dramatic fashion, defeat Sam Houston 6-1 behind a complete game from freshman pitcher Tyler Alexander.
TCU will host Pepperdine this weekend in the Super Regional in a best-of-three series with the winner advancing to the College World Series. For information on tickets, visit gofrogs.com.
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