A wild start for NCAA tournament
Teammates celebrated a Florida pitcher's milestone by shoving a whipped-cream pie in his face, Kentucky and Kent State played the second-longest game in postseason history, and two No. 1 seeds were upset at home.
All in one day.
The 2012 NCAA baseball tournament couldn't have gotten off to a more compelling start. Here's a rundown of some of the more notable moments and performances from Friday's opening-round games -- and also a look ahead at a few key Saturday matchups.
Game of the day
Kent State and Kentucky played 21 innings before the Golden Flashes emerged with a 7-6 victory in Gary, Ind. An RBI triple by Alex Miklos in the top of the 21st proved to be the game winner for Kent State, which used five pitchers in the win. Kentucky's Thomas McCarthy struck out looking with runners on second and third to end the game. The Wildcats also squandered a golden opportunity in the bottom of the 20th when J.T. Riddle hit into a 1-2-3 double-play with one out and the bases loaded. Kentucky's A.J. Reed pitched nine innings in relief in a contest that lasted six hours and 37 minutes. The game was the second-longest in NCAA postseason season history, as Texas beat Boston College in 25 innings in 2009.
Florida's Jonathan Crawford threw the NCAA's first postseason no-hitter since 1991 in Friday's 4-0 victory over Bethune-Cookman in Gainesville. Crawford, who wasn't even on the Gators' postseason roster last season, used a 95 mph fastball to strike out five hitters while walking only one. Seventy of his 98 pitchers were strikes. "Around the eighth inning, it just hit me," Crawford said of the potential of throwing a no-hitter. "I couldn't sit down because I was so nervous."
New Mexico's D.J. Peterson went 4-for-4 with a home run and two RBIs in the Lobos' 4-0 win over San Diego in Los Angeles.
UCLA got a complete-game effort out of starting pitcher Adam Plutko, who struck out seven and allowed just two hits in a 3-0 win over Creighton.
Also tossing a complete game was Stanford's Mark Appel, who struck out 11 in a 9-1 win over Fresno State.
North Carolina State's Ryan Matthew was 3-for-5 with four RBIs in a 16-5 win over Sacred Heart in Raleigh.
Dallas Baptist's Joel Hutter was 3-for-5 with five RBIs in a 10-0 win over Texas-Arlington in Waco.
South Carolina's Colby Holmes struck out nine and allowed just one hit in eight innings in the Gamecocks' 7-0 victory over Manhattan in Columbia.
LSU's Aaron Nola struck out 10 in eight innings in a 4-1 victory over Louisiana-Monroe in Baton Rouge.
It's not unheard of for No. 1 seeds to lose opening-round games -- but rarely do they suffer thumpings like the one No. 4 seed Stony Brook doled out to host Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The big blow occurred in the top of the eighth, when William Carmona gave Stony Brook a 9-2 lead by belting a three-run homer.
Oral Roberts' 4-2 victory over No. 1 seed Baylor in Waco snapped the Bears' 22-game home winning streak. The Bears had two runners on base in the bottom of the ninth when Logan Vick grounded out to end the game. Baylor -- the tournament's No. 4 overall seed -- will face Texas-Arlington in an elimination game today. Steve Smith's Bears were ranked as high as No. 2 less than a month ago. But the Big 12 regular-season champions have now lost seven of their last 12 games, with five of those setbacks coming against Oklahoma.
Two-time defending NCAA champion South Carolina won its 17th consecutive postseason game Friday, an NCAA record. The Gamecocks haven't lost in the postseason since falling to Oklahoma to open the 2010 College World Series.
Samford hit four home runs in a 5-0 upset of Mississippi State in Tallahassee.
Oregon, the tournament's No. 5 overall seed, needed two runs in the bottom of the ninth to escape with a 6-5 victory over Austin Peay in Eugene.
Georgia Tech won its season-best sixth straight game by defeating the College of Charleston 8-4. The Yellow Jackets are hitting .329 as a team in their last five contests.
Saturday's intriguing matchup
Oregon coach George Horton will be facing his former team when the Ducks host Cal State Fullerton. In Horton's 11 seasons (1997-2007) as head coach, the Titans won eight Big West championships and made six appearances in the College World Series. They captured the NCAA title in 2004.
Elimination gates to watch
No. 1 seeds Baylor and Miami could both go home early if they don't turn things around today. The Bears host UT-Arlington in Waco, while Miami faces Missouri State in Coral Gables.
MORE COLLEGE SPORTS HEADLINES
- Denver edges UNC in lacrosse quarterfinals
- WCC extends deal with commish Zaninovich
- Martin, first black athlete in SEC, dies at 66
- Rutgers hires Louisville's Hermann as AD