TCU Teaches Grand Canyon a LessonAt The Ballpark
PHOENIX — World Series champion Tim Salmon threw out the first pitch. Cheerleaders danced in the aisles of a new pristine stadium. Fans set a school attendance record and received giveaways. Fireworks shot off after the game.
The pomp and circumstance was all there.
Opening night in a new stadium comes with inflatables, Tim Salmon throwing out the first pitch and an immaculate purple haze (fitting) sunset: pic.twitter.com/a7mmKZTIqJ
— Shotgun Spratling (@ShotgunSprD1) February 17, 2018
GCU Ballpark was christened, but the cheers coming from the stands as purple post-game explosions lit up the night came from the visiting team’s fans.
Like a fight that ends a New Year’s Party, the celebration for all the promise and expectations at Grand Canyon abruptly came to a stop. The Lopes gave up three runs in the ninth inning as No. 7 TCU showed the resolve that has helped it make four consecutive trips to Omaha. Josh Watson hit a two-run triple and scored on a sacrifice fly to push the Horned Frogs to a 3-2 victory. It sucked the collective breath out of the Grand Canyon fans.
What was supposed to be a glorious coming-out party and sign of things to come for Grand Canyon became a lesson on what it takes to be a College World Series contender.