Virginia advances to CWS
Sophomore Josh Sborz went seven shutout innings and Virginia used a pair of three-run innings early to beat Maryland 11-2 Monday night in Game 3 of the Charlottesville Super Regional and advance to the College World Series for the third time in six seasons.
Junior third baseman Kenny Towns went 3 for 4, driving in four runs on a triple and a single to force Maryland starter Bobby Ruse out of the game after 2 1-3 innings. Ruse (7-3) gave up six runs on six hits and a walk.
Sborz (5-4) allowed four hits and three walks while striking out nine. The national No. 3 Cavaliers are the highest remaining seed.
The 13-hit rout culminated a weekend comeback for Virginia, which lost the first game of the Super Regional before cruising to victory Sunday and Monday. The win boosted Virginia's record to 3-1 in deciding games of Super Regionals.
Sborz has had control issues much of the season, but he escaped trouble by getting Maryland third baseman Jose Cuas to ground into a double play to end a threat in the first inning.
Virginia jumped on Ruse in the first after he hit shortstop Daniel Pinero in the back. Right fielder Joe McCarthy hit a line drive up the middle off of Ruse's leg.
Left fielder Derek Fisher followed up by driving the first pitch up the middle to score Pinero from second. Towns then blasted a triple off the left-field wall that drove in two more runs. Maryland left fielder Tim Lewis had to retrieve his glove after leaping in vain to make the grab and losing it over the wall.
Towns came up to bat again in the third inning with two on and Maryland pausing to discuss pitching strategy. Whatever they discussed didn't work. Towns sent a 1-1 pitch into left field to score two more runs and make it 5-0.
After Maryland reliever Tayler Stiles walked the bases loaded, Virginia center fielder Brandon Downes hit a grounder up the middle to close out the scoring for the inning and effectively put the game out of reach.
Maryland scored two runs in the eighth when senior shortstop Blake Schmit hit a two-run, two-out double down the third-base line off Cavaliers reliever Austin Young. Virginia called in relief ace Nick Howard to end the threat and he induced a groundout from Lewis on his first pitch.
The Cavaliers responded in the bottom of the eighth with five runs to pad their lead to 11-2 and prompt the crowd to begin chanting, ``ACC,'' in reference to the Terrapins' final game as a league rival before their move to the Big Ten.
Mississippi 10, Louisiana-Lafayette 4: Pinch-hitter Holt Perdzock hit a two-run double in the ninth inning and Mississippi ended a 42-year College World Series drought by punching its ticket to Omaha with a 10-4 win over Louisiana-Lafayette in the deciding game of the Lafayette Super Regional on Monday night.
A throwing error on Perdzock's double allowed another run to score and J.B. Woodman's sacrifice fly scored Perdzock to complete the Rebels' four-run rally.
Scott Weathersby (3-1) pitched two scoreless innings for Mississippi (46-19) and Josh Laxer picked up his sixth save, allowing only an unearned run in 3 1-3 innings.
Austin Anderson and Sikes Orvis homered in the Rebels' three-run fourth. ULL (58-10) lost back-to-back games for the first time all season. Ragin' Cajuns starter Cody Boutte (9-1) went four innings, giving up four runs on five hits.
ULL pitchers issued eight walks and hit three batters.
Ole Miss will play Virginia on Sunday in its first game of the College World Series.
TCU 6, Pepperdine 5: TCU had already tied the game in the top of the ninth when No. 9 batter Kyle Bacak came to the plate with a runner on third base.
With a 1-0 count, Bacak got the sign that sent the Horned Frogs back to the College World Series, executing a suicide squeeze bunt as the Horned Frogs rallied for a 6-5 victory over Pepperdine on Monday.
"I really wasn't thinking about a squeeze or anything like that," he said. "It kind of caught me by surprise at first, but it made sense."
The Frogs (47-16), the visiting team in Game 3 despite hosting the super regional, started the ninth with three consecutive hits off Pepperdine closer Eric Karch (4-2) that included Dylan Fitzgerald's tying RBI double. There was an infield popout before Bacak bunted as Jerrick Suiter, who had reached on a high-chopping infield single, charged home from third.
Closer Riley Ferrell (2-1) got the final six outs, leaving two runners on base and Waves two-way threat Aaron Brown on deck when Bryan Langlois struck out to end the game.
TCU is in the College World Series for the second time in five seasons and plays Sunday against fellow Big 12 team Texas Tech. A third Big 12 team, Texas, is on the other side of the bracket.
"That's all we've ever talked about," said Kevin Cron, the junior first baseman who homered and had an RBI double. " It's a pretty unbelievable feeling."
Brandon Caruso and Brown homered for the Waves (43-18), the West Coast Conference regular-season champ trying to get to the College World Series for the first time since winning the 1992 national championship. Steve Rodriguez, their 11th-year head coach, was then an All-American infielder for Pepperdine.
"To be able to come in this place and do what we did, I thought was very impressive," said Rodriguez, who has a roster loaded with freshmen and advanced as a No. 3 seed in the regional at Cal Poly.
The Big 12 tournament champion Frogs have won 32 of their last 36 games, and had won 10 in a row before losing 3-2 Sunday in Game 2. Their fourth super regional in six years was their first at home.
"I dreamed of this, playing for the right to go Omaha in front of our fans," said Jim Schlossnagle, in his 11th season as TCU's coach.
The first batter Ferrell faced in the eighth with two men on was Brad Anderson, whose sac fly put Pepperdine up 5-4.
TCU tied the game at 4-all with two runs in the sixth. Boomer White, who had an inning-ending strikeout in the third with the bases loaded, had a two-out RBI single and Cron followed with a run-scoring double, an inning after his solo homer.
Caruso had a leadoff triple in the first, when TCU right fielder Fitzgerald misplayed the ball, stepping in before it went over his head. Caruso scored on Brown's single.
Bacak also had an RBI single in the second, the third consecutive two-out single by the bottom three batters in TCU's lineup.
Brown's 13th homer put the Waves up 4-2 in the fifth.
He was drafted in the third round Friday by Philadelphia as an outfielder. In Sunday's win for Pepperdine, after TCU won the opener 3-2 on Saturday, Brown pitched seven scoreless innings and from center field threw out the potential tying run at the plate in the eighth inning.
"Can everybody confirm that Aaron Brown will not be in Omaha, because I will sleep better if that's the case," Schlossnagle said. "What a great, great player."
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.