D1 Digest: Ole Miss, Southern Miss Exude PerseveranceRoundup
Game Of The Day: No. 4 Ole Miss 12, No. 13 Maryland 6
The final score may make it look as though Ole Miss routed the visiting Terps in game two of their series in Oxford, but the Rebels used some late-inning fireworks to put the game out of reach and actually entered the bottom of the seventh down with Maryland leading 6-4.
After Garrett Wood walked with the bases loaded to pull within one, star shortstop Jacob Gonzalez provided the go-ahead hit, a two-run single, giving him a 3-for-4, three-RBI day at the plate and giving Ole Miss a 7-6 lead. In the eighth they scored five more runs on an Anthony Calarco two-run homer, an RBI single by Wood and a two-run single by Ethan Groff.
Early in the game it was a back-and-forth affair. Ole Miss opened the scoring with a single tally in the bottom of the first. Maryland responded with a run of their own in the top of the second, Ole Miss got that run back in the bottom of the frame and the Terps once again pulled to even with another run in the top of the third. Ole Miss took a 4-2 lead in the bottom of the fourth thanks to a two-run single by Groff, who had four RBIs in this game.
Three straight bases-loaded walks in the top of the fifth by Bobby Zmarzlak, Elijah Lambros and Luke Shliger gave Maryland a 5-4 lead and they added one more in the seventh on a double off the bat of Shliger.
Mason Nichols shut down the mighty Terps offense over the final two innings to secure the win and give the defending national champs an opportunity to take the series on Sunday after Maryland won game one on Friday.
(Another) Game Of The Day: No. 18 Southern Miss 14, Illinois 13
Heading into the sixth inning it looked as though Southern Miss was cruising. They had what appeared to be a comfortable 8-3 lead and Illinois was having difficulty getting much going at the plate. Things quickly changed in the sixth when Illinois scored three runs to make it an 8-6 game. Southern Miss answered back with a single run in the bottom of the sixth only to see the Illini tie the game in the top of the seventh when Cal Hejza hit the first of two three-run home runs.
In the bottom of the seventh Southern Miss got another run back to pull ahead, 10-9, and carried that score into the top of the ninth. With two runners on and one out Hejza stepped to the plate once again and ripped a 1-2 pitch over the wall in left-center field for yet another three-run blast to give Illinois a 12-10 lead.
No lead was safe in this game, however, and Southern Miss kept plugging away, getting RBI singles by Danny Lynch and Matthew Etzel in the bottom of the ninth to force extra innings.
In the 10th inning Illinois got runners at the corners with one out and Hejza once provided an answer, this time a sac fly to right field that gave Illinois the lead once again, 13-12.
And Southern Miss got a run right back, again, as Matthew Russo hit an RBI groundout to the right side of the infield to pull even, 13-13.
After the Eagles kept the Illini off the board in the top of the 11th inning, Southern Miss loaded the bases on a pair of walks and a hit batter. Carson Paetow ended the game with a walkoff single, giving them the 14-13 victory to tie the series. The rubber match will be played on Sunday.
Upset Of The Day: Bowling Green 9, No. 16 Louisville 6
On Friday Louisville beat Bowling Green 2-1 in a game that finished in just one hour and 46 minutes. Bowling Green tied the game in the sixth, 1-1, before the Cardinals pulled ahead in the seventh, as Ryan Hawks and Greg Farone combined to strike out 11 Falcons.
Saturday instantly provided more offense, but it looked as though the Cardinals would once again have their way as Ryan McCoy hit a three-run home run in the first inning after the first two batters – Christian Knapczyk and Jack Payton – reached.
Louisville carried a 5-1 lead into the third when Bowling Green first baseman Leighton Banjoff, a Nebraska transfer, hit a two-run homer. Kyle Gurney added a two-run single in the fourth to tie the game, which was answered by a Knapczyk RBI single in the bottom of the fourth allowing Louisville to re-claim the lead, 6-5.
That would end Louisville’s scoring but Bowling Green wasn’t finished. A four-run eighth proved to be the difference in this one with runs scoring on an RBI single, a bases-loaded hit-by-pitch, an RBI fielder’s choice and a double steal.
Three Bowling Green relievers – Luke Krouse, Connar Penrod and Owen Recker – combined to work the final six innings of the game keeping No. 16 Louisville off the board. It was the first win in program history against a ranked opponent.
Honorable Mention: Portland 4, No. 5 Texas A&M 1
Player Of The Day: Brennen Dorighi, Iowa
Had Illinois picked up the win against Southern Miss, Hejza would have been an easy pick for Player of the Day. Since the Illini fell short the nod goes to Iowa first baseman and cleanup hitter Brennen Dorighi after going 3-for-4 with two runs scored and five RBIs in a 12-4 win against No. 1 LSU at the Karbach Round Rock Classic. Of Dorighi’s three base hits one was a two-run double and the other a three-run homer that gave the Hawkeyes some breathing room.
One day after being shut out by Sam Houston, Iowa didn’t take long to get their bats rolling against the top-ranked Tigers as Keaton Anthony hit a solo home run in the top of the first inning. Iowa added two more runs in that first frame and tacked on another run in the third leading up to a three-run fourth, headlined by Dorighi’s double. His homer came in the eighth, following an RBI single by Anthony, and effectively put the game out of reach.
Iowa wraps up the Karbach Round Rock Classic against Kansas State on Sunday. LSU will play Sam Houston.
Pitchers Of The Day: Juaron Watts-Brown, Evan O’Toole, Nolan McLean, Oklahoma State
No-hitters in back-to-back games? Why not?
Entering Saturday’s game against Loyola Marymount, the first of a doubleheader due to inclement weather, Oklahoma State was four days removed from tossing a no-hitter in a 2-0 win over Cal Baptist. Five different pitchers combined to pull off that feat, and three pitchers combined to toss another no-no on Saturday for the Pokes, a 1-0 victory over LMU. Juaron Watts-Brown worked the first six innings, Evan O’Toole the next two and Nolan McLean the final frame. O’Toole, who picked up the win moving to 2-0 on the year, and McLean, who notched his third save of the season, were also part of Tuesday’s combined no-no. Oklahoma State’s lone run came in the seventh inning on a solo blast from freshman outfielder Nolan Schubart.
LMU got the best of the Cowboys in game two, scoring three runs in the top of the eighth to tie the game and then watching Sam Biller hit a two-run home in the 10th that proved to be the game winner as part of a 10-8 win.
Honorable Mention: Noah Hall, South Carolina; Blaine Traxel, West Virginia
Seminoles Take Down Frogs To Claim Series
Florida State moved to 6-0 on the year on Saturday with a 10-8 win over No. 8 TCU, claiming the series win with the victory after taking Friday’s game, 10-1. FSU was down 2-0 heading into the fourth inning when Jordan Carrion tied the game with a two-run single. They added three more runs in the fifth, headlined by Jaime Ferrer’s two-run homer, to take a lead they wouldn’t relinquish. A five-run seventh gave Florida State a much-needed cushion, an inning that saw dynamic freshman Cam Smith hit a solo home run with Ferrer adding his second two-run home run of the game as both Smith and Ferrer enjoyed three-hit performances at the plate.
The series win for Florida State is especially notable considering TCU’s impressive performance last weekend at the College Baseball Showdown, recording a pair of wins over ranked teams (Vanderbilt and Arkansas).
Gauchos Make A Strong Impression
UC Santa Barbara really took it to the Oregon Ducks this weekend. After beating No. 25 Oregon 6-2 on Friday they tacked on two more Ws on Saturday, by scores of 10-0 and 4-1. The series sweep pushed UCSB to 5-2 and it undoubtedly will force Oregon out of the D1Baseball Top 25 come Monday.
In the first game on Saturday the Gauchos dominated in all phases of the game. Matt Ager and Tyler Bremner combined on the shutout, with Ager working the first six innings and Bremner the final three. Oregon mustered only two hits in this game while UCSB tallied 14, including a 3-for-5, three run, three-RBI performance by catcher Aaron Parker. Two of those hits by Parker were home runs as he, Christian Kirtley and Jared Sundstrom each hit a solo shot in the eighth inning.
In the second game the UCSB pitching staff provided much of the same, seeing Reed Moring strike out six over the first 6 2/3 innings. Hudson Barrett worked the next two scoreless frames, striking out five of the nine batters he faced, and Sam Whiting recorded the save. The Gauchos offense wasn’t quite as loud in this game, although they made the most of things by scoring four runs on seven hits. Justin Trimble had the biggest of those hits, a two-run home run in the fourth.
Shutouts A Common Theme
There were six shutouts on Saturday that involved ranked teams, including Oklahoma State’s 1-0 win over Loyola Marymount and UC Santa Barbara’s 10-0 victory over Oregon. Here’s a quick look at the four other games:
• After No. 10 Vanderbilt beat No. 17 UCLA by a score of 6-0 on Friday, the Bruins returned the favor on Saturday with a 3-0 victory. All three of UCLA’s runs came on solo home runs, starting with back-to-back jacks from Duce Gourson and Darius Perry in the seventh inning; Kyle Karros added one in the ninth. The game started as an intriguing pitcher’s duel between UCLA’s Alonzo Tredwell and Vanderbilt’s Hunter Owen, each of whom struck out seven batters, working the first five and 4 2/3 innings, respectively. Cody Delvecchio, Charles Harrison and Luke Jewett combined to work the final four frames for UCLA as each team only mustered five hits each.
• If there wasn’t a no-hitter in play on Saturday South Carolina’s Noah Hall would have likely received Pitcher of the Day honors. The senior righthander struck out 12 over eight scoreless innings, allowing just three base hits without issuing a walk in the Gamecocks 1-0 vicotry over visiting Penn. Hall was extremely efficient on the day, staying under 100 pitches (98) despite going so deep into the game. Matthew Becker struck out two more batters in a scoreless ninth to pick up the save, his first of the year. South Carolina’s only run came on a solo shot off the bat of right fielder Ethan Petry with the 23rd-ranked Gamecocks moving to 7-0 on the year. Up next for South Carolina next weekend: the Palmetto Series against in-state rival Clemson.
• After opening the season with a loss against Penn State, No. 22 Miami has now rattled off six straight wins, the most recent of which being a 6-0 victory over Dartmouth. Dorian Gonzalez Jr.’s three-run home run in the second inning proved to be all the runs the Hurricanes would need in this one as Karson Ligon and Carlos Lequerica combined on the shutout. Ligon struck out six over the first seven innings, allowing just four hits, and Lequerica fanned four of the eight batters he faced over the final two innings. Following a midweek contest at Florida Atlantic, Miami travels to Gainesville next weekend for their annual non-conference series against the Florida Gators.
• No. 21 NC State moved to 6-0 on Saturday with a 7-0 win over Belmont. The Wolfpack scored six of the first seven runs courtesy of long balls: Payton Green hit a solo home run in the second, Carter Trice hit a three-run blast in the fourth and Green added a two-run shot in the fifth. Green ended the day 3-for-4 with three runs scored as both he and Trice drove in three. NC State starter Matt Willadsen struck out eight Belmont hitters over the first six innings in which he allowed just one base hit and two walks. Rio Britton (2 innings) and Everette Harris wrapped up the win with three more scoreless frames.
• After winning Friday’s opener, No. 2 Stanford beat Rice twice more on Saturday in both games of a doubleheader in which the Cardinal pitching staff allowed just two earned runs. Leadoff hitter Eddie Park went a combined 5-for-9 with two doubles, a homer and five RBIs.
• Hurston Waldrep struck out 13 Cincinnati Bearcats in six innings, moving to 2-0 on the year while leading No. 7 Florida to a 13-3 victory. Wyatt Langford, Ty Evans and Josh Rivera all hit home runs, with Rivera’s blast being a first-inning grand slam.
• UCF picked up a pair of wins against Clemson on Saturday to claim the series, the first game 4-2 and the second 10-7. The first eight innings of the first game were played on Saturday before inclement weather forced the two teams to finish the contest on Saturday afternoon. UCF scored 10 runs on 10 hits in the second game, which included solo home runs by Drew Faurot and John Rhys Plumlee and a three-run dinger by Tom Josten.
• Coastal Carolina’s offense has been alive and well in their series against visiting Creighton, beating the Bluejays 14-5 on Saturday after a 14-12 win on Friday. Eight of the nine starters in the lineup had either a multi-hit, multi-run or multi-RBI game, with Nick Lucky hitting a pair of doubles and Tanner Garrison hitting three two-baggers as part of a 4-for-4 game.
• Luke Beckstein’s second inning grand slam in game one seemed to set the tone for the rest of the day as Northeastern won a pair of games against Indiana State on Saturday to move to 4-1 on the year, now taking each of their first two weekend series after beating UNC Greensboro a week ago. After hitting three home runs in the first game, a 9-5 win, they added five more in game two, a 15-10 victory. Leadoff hitter Mike Sirota hit two home runs in that second game while Alex Lane hit a dinger in each contest.
• Wofford now has a pair of series victories over two notable Midwest mid-majors. On Saturday they beat Kent State, 7-3, after a win on Friday to claim this weekend’s series which followed their series victory over Southern Illinois a week ago. After starter Charlie Weber struck out seven over the first four innings of the game, Zac Cowan added seven more punchouts over the final five frames, keeping Kent State off the board.
• Through the first seven games of the year Oral Roberts pitching staff is one of the nation’s best and they’ve done a great job keeping the powerful Texas State lineup relatively quiet over the first two games of their series. The Bobcats did take game one, 3-2, but ORU answered back on Saturday with a 6-3 win in San Marcos. ORU Relievers Dalton Patten and Cade Denton were especially stingy in this game, each striking out three in two scoreless innings forcing what will be an intriguing rubber match on Sunday.
• With a pair of wins over both Ohio State and Gonzaga, Grand Canyon is now 6-2 on the season with a rather impressive resume already through the first two weekends of the season. On Saturday they started by beating Gonzaga in a barnburner, 17-16, and then edged Ohio State, 7-5. Keep an eye on GCU once again next weekend as they’re scheduled to host Texas State leading up to conference play.