This past week, baseball continued its season with a single-game homestand versus TCU and a three-game conference matchup versus Tarleton.
It was a tough weekend with a seven-inning run-rule loss versus No. 19 TCU on Tuesday and close losses in games one and two versus Tarleton.
The Horned Frogs came to town with hot bats coming off a series win versus Baylor in Waco on Tuesday. TCU managed to bat through the lineup in both the first and second innings putting up a five-spot in both innings.
ACU starter sophomore right-hander Riley Bauman would go only one-third of an inning, giving up two hits, four earned runs, and three walks. This resulted in the Wildcats utilizing five more pitchers in a game that already seemed a washout.
The Wildcat’s only offensive production came in the third and fourth innings, scoring three runs between the two innings. This was in part due to the efforts of junior outfielder Grayson Tatrow of Mansfield’s 433-foot home run to right field.
Tatrow, who earned Western Athletic Conference preseason honors by being named WAC preseason all-conference outfielder, has six home runs this season and has continued to be an explosive bat despite a relatively cold week versus TCU and Tarleton, where he batted just .215 but still drove in four RBI.
TCU would ultimately win in a seven-inning run-ruled 14-3 game. Though in the seventh, there appeared to be confusion on if the game would end with both teams packing up and leaving the dugouts with the umpires appearing not to be ready to end the matchup.
Game one versus Tarleton was Friday afternoon found itself tied up going into the ninth; head coach Rick McCarty sent closer senior right-hander Tanner Riley of Clyde. Riley, who had just a 0.84 ERA entering the game, would allow two runs giving the Texans a 9-7 lead and ultimate win.
Entering game two, ACU looked to its bullpen to go the distance. This strategy appeared to work going into the 8th with the Wildcats leading 6-5, though the Texans had other plans scoring five runs on just two hits flipping the script in route to a 12-6 win.
On Sunday, though, the series was already lost. The Wildcats entered with an opportunity to turn their momentum around entering their next week.
With this in mind, the Wildcats found themselves out to an early 7-0 lead after the first inning. After dropping four runs in both the third and fourth innings, the Wildcats cruised to an 18-2 run-rule victory.
Despite going 1-3, Coach McCarty says that weeks like this are just part of baseball.
“You go through one every year; last year, it was the Texas UIW, McCarty said. We had a really tough spell right there, but that was before our 11-game win streak and winning 15 of 18 down the stretch.”
The Wildcats have a demanding schedule remaining this season, including a home and away series with No. 7 Texas Tech on April 26 and May 3.
The Wildcat’s next series will be a two-game stretch versus the Air Force Falcons of the Mountain West, with game one of the series streaming on ESPN+.