In what started as a pitcher’s duel early between TCU’s Mitchell Traver and Florida’s Jackson Kowar Friday night, ended in a Horned Frog blowout victory over the Florida Gators, 9-2.
“Certainly felt good about the way Mitchell started the game for us and Jackson on their side was beyond amazing,” TCU head coach Jim Schlossnagle said. “I started to think after he was punching us out there so much, has there ever been a 20-strikeout game in the World Series?”

Traver retired the first seven Gators that he faced, and Kowar put away the first eight Horned Frogs that he faced, striking out seven.

After Kowar struck out the first two TCU batters of the third inning, Horned Frog shortstop and Omaha native Ryan Merrill extended his hitting streak to six with a single to right field. TCU then scored two runs on back-to-back doubles by right fielder Austen Wade and designated hitter Zach Humphreys to give TCU a two-run advantage.

After Traver struck out the first Gator in the bottom of the third, UF catcher Mike Rivera clubbed a towering home run to left field that cut the TCU lead in half, 2-1. Traver then had trouble shaking off the homer, walking the next two batters and surrendering another run on UF shortstop Dalton Guthrie’s deep double to left field that just missed leaving the ball park. Traver’s defense picked him up on that play, as left fielder Josh Watson threw out UF right fielder Ryan Larson after he overran the bag at third base.

The Horned Frogs then jumped back in front on a two-run triple by Watson, doubling the TCU lead to 4-2 in the top of the fourth. The triple was both Watson’s and the College World Series’ first of 2017. From there, the TCU bullpen shut down the Florida offense. Read More