There aren’t a lot of things in sports better than Omaha and the College World Series. Unfortunately, the first slate of games were mostly uneventful, as both Miami and LSU tied CWS records for most pitchers used in a game (8) on their way to beatdowns.
Florida, who is by far the hottest team in the eight-team field, took down Miami by a score of 15-3, with 11 of those runs coming in the fourth inning alone.
Miami actually led 2-1 heading into that Gator at bat, but matching the highest output for a single inning would put UF in golden position to advance. The Gators have outscored their opponents 68-15 in six postseason games so far.
The Canes will be joined in an elimination game by the Arkansas Razorbacks. The Hogs fell to Virginia 5-3, as the Hoos scored a run in each of the final two frames of the game. Kenny Towns hit an RBI double in the 8th to give them the lead, and an Ernie Clement RBI single in the 9th sealed the deal.
On the other side of the bracket, TCU rode two four-run innings to down LSU 10-3. The Horned Frogs never trailed, getting out to a 2-1 lead in the fourth, and then pulling out to a 10-1 lead before the 8th.
TCU starter Preston Morrison was on his game throughout his seven innings, surrendering just five hits to the vaunted LSU lineup.
The final game of the first go around had the best pitching matchup, as Cal State Fullerton threw Thomas Eshelman against Vanderbilt’s Carson Fulmer.
But unfortunately, that great duel was cut short, as rain suspended the game from Sunday night to Monday morning, forcing both pitchers out of the game prematurely.
It also ultimately cost Fullerton the game.
Eshelman was charged with a run because the game was suspended with a runner on and a full count to Zander Wiel. Wiel then smacked a double off Chad Hockin to start the action on Monday, to bring the Commodores within two.
Fullerton scored two runs in the fifth to make it 3-1. The first run came on a wild pitch by Fulmer. And then Josh Vargas brought in A.J. Kennedy with a single to score their third and final run of the game.
CSF entered the ninth with the two-run lead, and gave up a leadoff double in the ninth. Bryan Reynolds followed that with a one-out RBI double down the left field line to make it 3-2.
After a mound visit from head coach Rick Vanderhook, left fielder Jeren Kendall stepped up to the plate for Vandy, and boom, walk-off bomb into the right field bullpen to give the Dores a 4-3 win.
Arkansas and Miami get Monday’s scheduled action started in an elimination game, followed by Virginia/Florida in the winners bracket. Maybe that walkoff win by Vandy will get the action going.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports