Tolle leads WSU to Frisco Classic Championship

Freshman Payton Tolle launches a home run during Sunday’s game against Texas A&M at the Frisco Classic. Tolle was named the Frisco Classic MVP and was an All-Tournament Selection at DH and starting pitcher. (Courtesy of Willie Schwanke / WSU Athletics)

After starting the season 0-6, Shocker baseball has responded with a 4-1 record since, including a Frisco Classic Championship this past weekend. 

In game one of the series, WSU collected its second win against Iowa this season, defeating the Hawkeyes, 6-4. Iowa jumped out to a 4-0 lead after three innings, but the Shockers used a late rally to cut into the advantage. Sawyer Thornhill delivered an RBI single, which was followed by a three-run double from Payton Tolle to tie the game at four.  

The Shockers would tack on two more runs on RBI singles from Thornhill and Chuck Ingram to take a 6-4 lead heading into the ninth inning. Connor Holden picked up a pair to strikeouts and maneuvered around a pair of base hits to secure his third save of the season.

After delivering a key three-run double against Iowa, Tolle allowed just one run over seven innings on the mound on Saturday against Washington State. The freshman two-way player surrendered six hits and struck out four in the 8-2 victory. 

The Shockers offense delivered a pair of runs in the second off of a Ross Cadena two-run single. WSU would add two more runs in the fourth, after Ross Cadena walked with the bases loaded and Andrew Stewart plated another run in the fielder’s choice. 

The Shockers added one more run in the sixth, as Couper Cornblum came around to score after a throwing error from the Washington State catcher. The Shocker offense added three more runs in the top of the ninth, after a Xavier Casserilla bases-loaded hit by pitch and a two-run single from Ingram to secure the 8-2 win. 

WSU once again used some late-inning magic to complete a come-from-behind win over Texas A&M on Sunday evening. The Aggies jumped out to a 4-0 lead but the Shockers answered with two runs of their own in the sixth, after an RBI double from Cornblum and an RBI single from Cadena. 

Ingram scored a run off of a RBI double in the seventh, scoring Casserilla. That was followed up by a towering two-run home run from Tolle to give the Shockers a late 5-4 lead. The lead didn’t last long, as Dylan Rock tied the game with a pinch-hit RBI single. 

The Shockers plated the winning run in the bottom of the eight, after Cornblum reached on a hit by pitch and advanced to third after two wild pitches. Jack Sigrist scored Cornblum on a sacrifice fly to give WSU a 6-5 lead. Holden delivered a scoreless ninth inning, with a groundout sealing the win. 

Tolle was named the Frisco Classic MVP, as well as an All-Tournament selection at both DH and Starting Pitcher. Thornhill earned a spot on the All-Tournament team, after reaching base in all three games.

The Shockers will take on Oral Roberts in their home opener on Tuesday at Eck Stadium. First pitch is slated for 3 p.m.