Dallas Colleges: 2012 NCAA baseball tournament
WACO, Texas -- Jake Wise and Colby Suggs were at the bottom of the pile of Arkansas players in the middle of the infield and enjoying every second of it.
The Razorbacks are headed to the College World Series.
Wise, a sophomore catcher who had entered the game as a defensive replacement, had a two-out RBI single in the top of the 10th and Suggs threw the final two innings in Arkansas' 1-0 victory over Baylor in the deciding game of their super regional Monday night.
"You get so excited, and when you're on the bottom you can't breathe, but it's a feeling you've wanted to feel your entire life," Wise said. "I've waited 20 years to be in a dog pile, and that was probably the best feeling of my life."
When Suggs (7-0) struck out Dan Evatt to end the game with two runners on base, Wise charged toward his pitcher and they were quickly joined in celebration by the rest of their teammates.
"It's a great feeling to have everybody on top of you," Suggs said. "Everybody just celebrating and being so happy together as a team."
Suggs, the fifth Arkansas pitcher in the combined five-hitter, struck out two and walked two while allowing one hit over the last two innings. The hard-throwing sophomore has gotten all his victories pitching in relief.
It will be the seventh CWS appearance for the Razorbacks (44-20), who play Kent State on Saturday. Arkansas clinched the final available spot in Omaha, where it will join fellow SEC teams Florida and South Carolina.
"We feel very fortunate to get out of here with two wins and have a chance to continue our season," Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn said. "At this level, 1-0 in extra innings to go to Omaha, I don't know if it gets any better. I know baseball purists probably love this game. As a coach, it was very stressful. Thank goodness it's over."
Baylor (49-17) last went to the College World Series in 2005.
After failing to win a game in the SEC tournament, the Razorbacks swept through their regional at Houston.
Then after losing the opener of the best-of-three series in Waco on Saturday, Arkansas forced another game by scoring twice in the bottom of the ninth of Game 2 to win 5-4. The Razorbacks took advantage of an error while loading the bases before consecutive batters were hit by pitches with the bases loaded.
Brian Anderson led off the Arkansas 10th Monday against Dillon Newman (4-4) with a single to left, and moved up on a sacrifice bunt by Bo Bigham. Matt Vinson struck out before Wise, who entered the game in the eighth, grounded a ball into left field out of the reach of diving shortstop Steve DalPorto.
Baylor senior starter Tyler Bremer struck out eight and allowed three hits in nine innings, the longest outing of his career.
"It was awesome, it was fun. Yeah, we lost, but no one's going to take that away from me," Bremer said. "I'll remember that for the rest of my life. Whether I have a short pro career, a long pro career, I have something I can really, really be proud of in the game of baseball, and that was that game."
Baylor had two outs in the 10th before Big 12 Player of the Year Josh Ludy, who had 16 home runs, walked for the fourth consecutive time. Cleanup hitter Max Muncy, who grounded into a double play in the eighth, followed with a single to left before Evatt struck out to end the game.
It was the third time this season Baylor was shut out, the first time in three months.
After scoring three runs in the fifth inning of Game 2 to take a 4-3 lead, Baylor didn't score again over the final 14 innings in the series. The Bears had their leadoff batter on base six times Monday night, including the sixth, seventh, eighth and ninth innings.
Meanwhile, after a one-out double in the first, Bremer retired 16 consecutive batters and didn't throw more than 10 pitches in an inning until the sixth.
"I thought we pushed (Bremer) about as far as we could. I don't really question the decision to take him out," Bears coach Steve Smith said. "When you've gone that much, you've done your part. We needed to pick it up for him. And you know, Dillon wasn't bad. Seeing-eye groundball that gets through."
Razorbacks starter Randall Fant struck out five and allowed two hits over four innings. Trent Daniel, the fourth pitcher, had 1 1-3 hitless innings before giving way to Suggs.
Baylor had the bases loaded in the fourth against Fant before Lawton Langford struck out. The Bears had the bases loaded again in the fifth against reliever Nolan Sanburn after three walks before Muncy grounded out.
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- South Carolina is headed back to the College World Series, beating Oklahoma 5-1 Monday for its 21st straight NCAA tournament win.
The two-time defending champion Gamecocks wrapped up the super regional series for their third straight trip to Omaha and 11th CWS appearance overall. Should South Carolina (45-17) again prevail, it would join the powerhouse program of Southern Cal as the only schools with more than two consecutive CWS titles. The Trojans hold the record with five straight crowns from 1970-74.
The game was suspended Sunday because of heavy rain. Once things resumed, South Carolina quickly took control to put away the Sooners (42-25).
Gamecocks closer Matt Price got catcher Dylan Neal on a check-swing, called third strike to set off the latest celebration at Carolina Stadium.
The Gamecocks took advantage of two Oklahoma mistakes to build a 2-0 lead in the seventh. Chase Vergason's two-run double put things away an inning later and gave South Carolina a 5-1 lead.
South Carolina opens CWS play Saturday against Florida, the tournament's No. 1 seed and the Gamecocks' Southeastern Conference rival. The Gators were also the club that fell to the Gamecocks in the CWS championship series last summer.
The Sooners had been the last team to defeat the Gamecocks in NCAA tournament play, taking a 4-3 victory at the 2010 College World Series. Oklahoma coach Sunny Golloway hoped his players could channel that memory this week at Carolina Stadium. Instead, the Sooners managed only one run and seven hits in two games.
Oklahoma was trying to force a deciding third game, but reliever Steven Okert could not hold down the Gamecocks once things resumed Monday.
The Sooners had their chances, though.
Tyler Webb (6-1) took over the mound for Colby Holmes, who shut down Oklahoma on one hit through five innings Sunday, and promptly worked himself into trouble with an error and two walks to load the bases. But after an 11-pitch at-bat, right fielder Cody Reine flied out to right to end the threat.
That's when the Gamecocks finally broke through off Okert. Connor Bright led off the seventh with a double into the right-field corner. Tanner English followed with a bunt to first baseman Evan Mistich, who threw wildly to third attempting to get pinch runner TJ Costen. Instead, Costen ran home with the game's first run.
English moved to third on Vergason's sacrifice bunt and scored when Okert (9-8) threw a wild pitch to the left of catcher Tanner Toal to give the Gamecocks a 2-0 lead.
The Sooners' last best chance came when Jack Mayfield and Garrett Carey walked to open the seventh. Golloway called for a hit-and-run but Mistich couldn't make contact and Mayfield was easily thrown out at third by catcher Dante Rosenberg.
Moments later, Mistich followed with an RBI single off Price to draw Oklahoma within 2-1. But Price struck out pinch hitter Chase Simpson and got Caleb Bushyhead on a fly ball to left to end the threat.
South Carolina put it away with a three-run eighth, highlighted by Vergason's two-run double to left center. All that was left for Gaemcocks fans who returned from Sunday night was the countdown to Omaha -- something they've grown accustomed to the past few years.
Price earned his 11th save of the season and 41st of his career.
Once the final pitch to Neal was called strike three, Price smiled wide and waited for his teammates to pile on. The celebration wasn't wild or excessive, not from a club which knows too well what it's like to win with a national title on the line.
The game, which was tied 0-0 in the sixth inning, is scheduled to resume Monday at 3:05 p.m. If a third game is necessary, it would start at 6:05 p.m.
The two-time defending national champion Gamecocks (44-17) are a win away from their third consecutive College World Series. They beat Oklahoma 5-0 in the first game of the best-of-three series on Saturday.
Officials first brought the tarp on the field at 7:26 p.m. A delay that included very little rain lasted for more than an hour.
About 10 minutes after the game resumed, rain began to fall again and play was called.
Arkansas (43-20) entered the ninth inning trailing 4-3 with Baylor closer Max Garner (3-3) on the mound. After loading the bases, he hit pinch-hitter Jimmy Bosco with a 2-2 fastball to tie the game. Crayton Bare came on and hit John Clay Reeves with his first pitch.
"It was definitely one of the craziest (RBIs) I've ever had," Reeves said. "It was a great feeling just to know that you stood in there and helped your team out."
Baylor (49-16) will host the Razorbacks on Monday with the winner advancing to the College World Series.
Trent Daniel (2-0), who got one out in the top of ninth, got the win for Arkansas.
Garner walked Matt Reynolds to open the ninth and gave up a one-out single to Brian Anderson before Bo Bigham hit a potential game-ending double-play ball to shortstop Jake Miller.
Miller, who had handled several tough plays flawlessly, dropped the ball, grabbed at it twice and couldn't get either runner, leaving the bases loaded. Garner then hit Bosco and was relieved by Bare, who threw one pitch.
Arkansas reliever Barrett Astin worked out of a bases-loaded, no-outs jam in the eighth. After loading the bases on a hit batter, a walk and a bunt single, Astin struck out Cal Towey and got Lawton Langford to hit into a double play.
"We felt like when we turned that double play, we were going to win the game," Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn said. "It was an incredible play, and it kept us excited in the dugout."
For the Bears, who lost a three-run lead in the ninth inning of their regional final last year against California, the ending was all too familiar.
"We are just trying to keep our heads up at this point," said Baylor ace Josh Turley, who was in line for the victory after retiring the last 13 hitters he faced in seven solid innings. "Unlike last year, at least the season is not over. We at least have one more game and we are going to fight to the end.
"This is postseason baseball. This is where you see the unexpected and that just happened to be the case today."
The Bears, who hit three home runs in Saturday's 8-1 win to open the series, took a 4-3 lead in the top of the fifth despite hitting only one ball out of the infield. After a walk and an infield single, Logan Vick drove in one run with a liner to center, and Josh Ludy and Max Muncy followed with RBI groundouts.
Arkansas scored in the first inning thanks to a misplay by Baylor. Designated hitter Joe Serrano's drive to left-center eluded a diving Dan Evatt and rolled to the wall when Vick overran the play. Serrano went in with a standup triple and scored on Reynolds' sacrifice fly.
The Bears tied it on Muncy's RBI single in the third, but centerfielder Matt Vinson prevented a bigger inning by throwing out Nathan Orf at the plate on Ludy's fly to shallow center.
Dominic Ficociello, who was 3-for-4 with an RBI in the opener, put the Razorbacks back on top in the third with a two-run double after two-out singles by Serrano and Reynolds.
Baylor (48-15) will host Arkansas (42-19), winner of the Houston Regional, beginning later this week at Baylor Ballpark. It marks the Bears' first super regional appearance since 2005, when they beat Clemson in Waco and advanced to the College World Series.
Dallas Baptist ends its season at 41-19.
DBU took a 1-0 lead on Joel Hutter's RBI single after freshman starter Cy Sneed (8-5) retired the Bears 1-2-3 in the first inning -- only the second time in five tournament games Baylor had gone down in order.
But Sneed didn't make it out of the second inning. The Bears used two hits, three walks, a hit batsman and a sacrifice fly to score three runs and take a lead they never gave up.
Baylor starter Josh Turley pitched four innings on two days' rest, allowing two runs, before Newman (4-3) came on in the fifth and shut the Patriots down the rest of the way.
COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Second-seeded TCU defeated third-seeded Mississippi 7-4 on Monday night to advance to a super regional against UCLA.
The Horned Frogs won four consecutive games in the College Station regional, including two straight against the Rebels, after dropping their opener against Mississippi on Friday.
TCU trailed 1-0 through three innings Monday but catcher Josh Elander and third baseman Jantzen Witte crushed home runs to left field in the fourth off Rebels starter Bobby Wahl, who allowed four runs.
The Rebels countered with two runs in the fifth to grab a short-lived 3-2 lead, but TCU immediately scratched back with two of its own in the fifth on an RBI groundout by Keaton Jones and an RBI single by Kyle Von Tungeln. The Horned Frogs added a run in the sixth on an RBI double to left-center by Brance Rivera, and then cushioned their lead to 7-3 in the seventh with two more runs courtesy of RBI singles by Witte and Derek Odell.
TCU starter Preston Morrison allowed three runs over 4 1/3 innings, while regional most outstanding player Justin Scharf (4-2) allowed a lone run over the final 4 2/3 innings to earn the victory.
Witte led TCU with 2 RBIs, while Witte, Von Tungeln, Elander and Rivera each collected two hits for the winners.
The Horned Frogs advance to their first super regional in two years, after finishing 1-2 last year as a regional host. Two years ago, TCU won a super regional at Texas to advance to the College World Series for the first time.
Harrison (1-0), a first baseman converted to a pitcher this year, had worked only 9 1/3 innings this season before coach Sunny Galloway handed him the ball for the most important game of the season. He allowed just three hits and two runs, struck out four and walked three.
The Sooners (42-23), who lost their opening game of the regional to the Mountaineers, completed a comeback that saw them eliminate Army and host Virginia on Sunday, then win two against the Appalachian State to advance to the super regional next week at South Carolina.
The Mountaineers (41-18) were making their first NCAA tournament appearance in 26 years and looking for their first regional title, but came up short on a day when the Sooners bats came alive. Oklahoma had 13 hits in winning the opener 14-6, and added 10 more in the clincher.
The Sooners had managed just 11 hits total in their first three games.
Oklahoma also went to work right away after Harrison allowed an RBI double by Daniel Kassouf in the top of the first. Caleb Bushyhead and Evan Mistich walked with one out, and Matt Oberste single in a run, his fifth hit and fifth RBI in as many at-bats to that point on the day.
With two out, Mayfield hit a liner to deep left, and Brandon Burris got a glove on the ball, which then squirted free as two runs scored, giving Harrison a 3-1 lead to work with.
He didn't allow another run until the sixth, and Jordan John came back from pitching eight innings in the loss on Saturday and worked two innings. He left after allowing a single to Jeremy Dowdy start the ninth, and Steven Okert came on and retired the next three to end it.
The Sooners now move to Columbia, S.C., where the Gamecocks are two-time defending national champions and riding an unprecedented 19-game winning streak in the NCAA tournament.
They did it behind Harrison, and by responding every time the Mountaineers scored.
After going ahead 4-1 in the third on Mayfield's sacrifice fly, the Sooner saw Appalachian State pull within 4-2 in the sixth on Daniel Kassouf's sac fly following Callaway's triple.
In the bottom of the inning, the Sooners answered.
Garrett Carey singled with one out, and was erased when shortstop Callaway fielded Erik Ross' grounder up the middle at shortstop and opted to get to the bag himself. He got the out, but Ross beat his throw to first. Ross was then picked off, but the speedy outfielder beat the throw to second, and scored easily on Tanner Toal's single -- hit first hit all weekend.
John worked the next two innings, allowing just one hit until Dowdy singled to start the ninth, and Okert finished it with a strikeout and two fly ball outs.
The Sooners (41-23), who eliminated Army and host Virginia in must-win games Sunday, fell behind 3-0 after three innings, but scored three in the fourth, four in the sixth and seventh and three more in the eighth.
Reine also hit a two-run triple and a sacrifice fly, and Matt Oberste went 4 for 4 and drove in four for the Sooners.
Reliever Steven Bruce (2-0) went 3 2-3 innings, allowing three runs, for the victory.
Appalachian State (41-17), seeking its first regional championship, got 11 hits and drew 10 walks against five Oklahoma pitchers, but stranded 14 runners.
Rob Marcello (6-5) lasted five innings and allowed just three hits, but six runs, to take the loss.
Overton (6-3) struck out 11, walked two and left with one out in the ninth after allowing two one-out hits and a run. Kindle Ladd finished, surviving a lazy pop to short right that fell as two runs scored. He got a grounder to end it.
Oklahoma (40-23), which eliminated Army earlier, will play Appalachian State on Monday in the championship. The Sooners will need to win two straight to reach the super regional. The Mountaineers are in their first tournament in 26 years.
Virginia (39-29-1) lost two one-run games, falling 6-5 to the Mountaineers earlier Sunday.
Matt Oberste homered for the Sooners, and Caleb Bushyhead had an RBI single in the seventh.
With the win TCU forced a game Monday night to decide which program will advance to a super regional.
Finnegan (4-4) allowed six hits and two earned runs while striking out seven and walking three over 7 1/3 innings. TCU grabbed a 2-1 lead in the fourth inning on Derek Odell's two-run home run into the right-field bullpen, and then added to its lead with single runs in the fifth, sixth and seventh innings.
The second-seeded Horned Frogs (39-20) have won three consecutive games after dropping their regional opener against the third-seeded Rebels (37-25) on Friday. Mississippi suffered its first loss in three games in the regional.
TCU had eliminated top-seeded Texas A&M 10-2 earlier Sunday for the right to take on Mississippi as the last two teams standing in College Station.
The two teams will play again on Monday night with a berth in the Super Regional at stake.
Making only his sixth career start, Stone (3-1) used offspeed pitches to baffle the Patriots, who hit .392 and scored 21 runs in winning their first two regional games.
Austin Elkins broke up the no-hitter when he cracked a double past first baseman Max Muncy with one out in the sixth, and Ronnie Mitchell followed with an RBI double to left-center to cut the lead to 6-1. Two batters later, Stone left to a standing ovation and reliever Ryan Smith struck out Landon Anderson to end the threat.
After scratching across single runs against starter Jay Calhoun (3-3) in the first and second innings, the Bears erupted for four more in the third on Evatt's blast and a two-run error by Patriots third baseman Kenny Hatcher.
An inning later, Evatt preserved Stone's no-hitter when he leaped above the nine-foot left-field fence to rob Boomer Collins of a homer.
Max Muncy and Cal Towey added home runs in the eighth inning for Baylor.
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