Early Runs Help Jayhawks Down TCU, 8-4
March 16, 2013
FORT WORTH, Texas – Sophomore Michael Suiter went 3-for-5 with an RBI, while KU’s pitchers dominated late in the game as Kansas scored an 8-4 triumph over TCU Saturday night in front of 3,776 fans at Lupton Stadium.
The Jayhawks even their first Big 12 series of the season at 1-1 and move to 12-6 overall. The Horned Frogs drop to 8-10 overall.
Outside of one rough inning, Benjamin was solid, allowing four runs on seven hits with a walk and seven strikeouts to earn his second victory of the season. The bullpen combo of Robert Kahana and Jordan Piché backed their starting pitcher, retiring the final nine hitters in the game. Along with Benjamin, the Jayhawk pitchers set down 16 of the 18 Horned Frogs they faced.
Suiter led KU’s offense, which recorded a pair of three-run innings early and led throughout the night. Kansas broke on top in the second inning on back-to-back RBI singles by junior Ka’iana Eldredge and freshman Tommy Mirabelli. Sophomore Dakota Smith then capped the rally with a sacrifice fly to right field for KU’s 19th of the season.
After the Horned Frogs scored a run in the bottom of the second, the Jayhawks came back with three more runs in the third to take a 6-1 lead. After back-to-back singles and an error, Connor McKay singled through the right side to plate one run, while a fielder’s choice scored KU’s second run of the inning. Junior Tucker Tharp came hustling home with KU’s sixth run on a double steal. TCU tried to get Tharp at the plate, but the junior’s slide knocked the ball from catcher Kyle Bacak’s glove.
Benjamin’s only bumpy inning was the fourth when TCU scored three runs on back-to-back doubles by Kevin Cron and Paul Hendrix after a leadoff walk, cutting the KU lead to 6-4. However, KU tacked on a pair of insurance runs with a leadoff triple by Justin Protacio, a walk to Jordan Dreiling and an RBI single by Suiter.
The Kansas sophomore extended his hitting streak to 13 games and has collected multiple hits in seven-straight contests dating back to a March 7 game against Niagara. McKay was the only other Jayhawk with multiple hits Saturday night, going 2-for-4 with a run scored and an RBI.
Kansas will look to take the rubber game of the three-game set Sunday at 1 p.m. Fans can watch the game live on Fox College Sports Atlantic (Channel 144 on Knology Cable).
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