FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — Riley Ferrell's biggest moment as the TCU closer turned into one of his best, and the Horned Frogs won the first super regional game on their home field.
Derek Odell had a two-run single for an early lead, Ferrell bailed TCU out of trouble in the eighth inning and the Horned Frogs beat Pepperdine 3-2 Saturday in the opener of a best-of-3 series.
The Waves (42-17) had runners at second and third with one out in the eighth when Ferrell struck out Brad Anderson and got Pepperdine's leading hitter, Aaron Barnett, on a groundout to second.
Ferrell struck out the side in the ninth for his 15th save to get the Horned Frogs (46-15), the No. 7 national seed, within a win of their second trip to the College World Series.
Game 2 is Sunday.
"I was thinking about throwing in the zone, making good pitches and letting them get it to my defense," said Ferrell, who has 62 strikeouts in 37 2/3 innings and extended the bullpen's scoreless streak to 26 innings. "Or if they want to swing and miss, that's fine too."
TCU ace Brandon Finnegan (9-3), the 17th overall pick by Kansas City earlier in the week, was cruising with a two-hit shutout in the seventh when he walked Hutton Moyer and Chris Fornaci knocked him out of the game with a two-run homer to get the Waves within a run.
"I thought the tide was going to turn there and it sure seemed like it was in the dugout," Fornaci said of his second homer.
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