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College World Series: TCU beats Florida State 8-1
TCU pitcher Matt Purke celebrates the third out of the seventh inning against Florida State in the opening baseball game of the NCAA College World Series, in Omaha, Neb., Saturday, June 19, 2010. TCU beat Florida State 8-1. - photo by Associated Press

OMAHA, Neb. — College World Series newcomer TCU isn't acting like it plans to go home any time soon.

Undefeated freshman Matt Purke overcame early trouble to limit Florida State to four singles and one unearned run over seven innings Saturday, and the Horned Frogs scored five times in the first inning on their way to an 8-1 victory in the CWS opener.

Coming off a hard-earned super-regional win at Texas last week, the Frogs gave Purke a big cushion and continued the Seminoles' frustration in Omaha.

"This is the point of the season when there are only going to be great teams left playing," TCU coach Jim Schlossnagle said. "What we went through last week, there was no tougher situation. Ninety percent of baseball is confidence, and our guys feel good about themselves. That doesn't mean we're going to win every time, but we're going to be ready to play."

The Frogs (52-12) advanced to a Monday night game against UCLA. The Seminoles (47-19), at the CWS for the 20th time, have lost five of their last six CWS openers and will play Florida in a Monday afternoon Bracket 1 elimination game.

"I wish there was something I could say that would make any sense," Florida State coach Mike Martin said. "Certainly we're disappointed, but this TCU club is very good. They whipped us today, and I got a few of those on my resume, and so it's nothing new."

TCU is the first team to win its CWS debut since Georgia Tech in 1994 — a team that featured future Boston Red Sox stars Nomar Garciaparra and Jason Varitek.

"They're everything I saw when I saw them play Texas on television," Martin said of TCU.

Florida State broke out to a 1-0 lead in the first inning, but the Frogs responded with five runs in the bottom half. Jason Coats' double into the left-field corner put TCU up 2-1 before Seminoles' starter Sean Gilmartin recorded an out.

The Frogs led 7-1 after Jantzen Witte scored on Brance Rivera's suicide-squeeze bunt in the third and Bryan Holaday hit his 14th homer in the fourth.

The Seminoles tested Purke right away. Tyler Holt lined the left-hander's first pitch of the game into left field, and he scored when TCU third baseman Jantzen Witte picked up Sherman Johnson's short bouncer and threw into the right-field bullpen.

But Purke settled down, striking out Mike McGee, James Ramsey and Stephen Cardullo in order to strand Johnson at third. The Seminoles ended up 0 for 13 with runners in scoring position.

"I thought the first inning was a difference-maker," Schlossnagle said. "You saw what we've seen all year. The more pressure the situation, the more that he's cornered, the better he is. A freshman in Omaha didn't panic and just made pitches."

Purke (15-0), who turned down a $4 million offer last year as the Texas Rangers' top draft pick, mixed his new changeup with a fastball in the mid 90s and a devastating curveball. After Holt's first-inning hit, Purke didn't allow another ball out of the infield until the seventh. He did walk four to match a season high.

Eric Marshall pitched two innings of scoreless relief, with Holt grounding out to third to end the game and set off the Frogs' celebration in the field.

"It's huge, and just shows how good our guys are," Purke said. "We battled every inning and looked to put together good at-bats. It takes a lot of pressure off you. You go out and throw and just compete. This is what we've done all year long. We never feel like we're out of a game because of our offense, defense and pitching."

TCU, the first team to score at least five runs in its first-ever CWS game since Wichita State in 1982, gave Purke plenty of cushion.

Jerome Pena and Holaday led off the bottom of the first with back-to-back singles against Gilmartin (9-8) before Coats hit the go-ahead double. Joe Weik and Aaron Schultz added RBI singles and Taylor Featherston a sacrifice fly.

Hunter Scantling relieved Gilmartin to start the fourth and gave up Holaday's long ball into the left-field bleachers.

Florida State has never won a CWS title in its 19 previous trips to Omaha. The Seminoles have advanced to the championship round three times, losing in 1970 to USC, in 1986 against Arizona and again in 1999 to ACC rival Miami.

"That's a ball game you can analyze from our side," Martin said. "We didn't make an error, so you might say we got our butts whipped, plain and simple."

UCLA 11, Florida 3

OMAHA, Neb. — Trevor Bauer pitched seven strong innings and set the UCLA season strikeouts record, and the Bruins cranked up their offense and capitalized on Florida's struggles to beat the Gators 11-3 in the College World Series on Saturday night.

The Bruins (49-14) won for the first time at the CWS and will play TCU in a Bracket 1 winners' game on Monday night.

Florida (47-16), the No. 3 national seed, meets Florida State in a Monday afternoon elimination game.

The sixth-seeded Bruins scored in eight innings and finished with 18 hits. Niko Gallego went 4 for 5 and Beau Amaral was 3 for 4.

Bauer (11-3) set the UCLA strikeout record in his last inning when he got Jonathan Pigot looking. Bauer struck out Preston Tucker to end the inning, giving him 11 for the game and 152 for the season.