June 15, 2008


Ninth-Inning Magic

Georgia scores four in final at-bat to get past Miami

 Peisel Celebrates in Omaha

Ninth-Inning Nightmare

By Phil Stanton

CollegeBaseballInsider.com Co-Founder


OMAHA, Neb. – The top of the ninth was big in both games Saturday.


After Stanford used an 11-run ninth to upset No. 4 Florida State in the opener, No. 8 Georgia scored four in its final at-bat to knock off No. 1 Miami 7-4 in the second game of the 2008 College World Series in front of 23,039 fans at Rosenblatt Stadium.


“Miami is the best team we’ve played all year,” Georgia head coach David Perno said. “Our kids fought like there’s no tomorrow. We played every pitch hard, we played close to our identity and put the big inning together when we needed to.”


The Bulldogs (42-23-1) will meet Stanford on Monday at 7 p.m. ET. The Hurricanes (52-10) will face Florida State in an elimination game Monday at 2 p.m. ET.


The Hurricanes were 45-0 after eight innings coming into the contest and took a 4-3 lead in the seventh on Yonder Alonso’s 24th homer. Closer Carlos Gutierrez took the mound and surrendered a leadoff single to Bryce Massanari. Pinch-runner Adam Fuller was sacrificed to second by Matt Cerione. Robbie O’Bryan struck out, but reached first on a wild pitch as Fuller moved to third. Lyle Allen’s base hit to left tied it at 4-4. David Thoms bounced back to Gutierrez, who threw the ball away at first, allowing two runs to score for the Bulldogs and putting Thoms on at third. Ryan Peisel’s single plated Thoms with the game’s final run.


“We’ve got to close the game out at the end,” Miami head coach Jim Morris said. “We’ve done that all year. We had our backs against the wall last weekend with Arizona, and we’ve got to do the same thing this week, keep battling and play the game. We’ve got enough pitching that if we play the game the way we can play, we’ll have a chance to come back.”


Peisel, celebrating his 22nd birthday, went 3 for 5 with one run and four RBI. His run-scoring single in the third knotted the score at 1-1. His two-run homer in the sixth made it a 3-3 ballgame. It was Peisel’s 11th home run of the season.


“It’s nothing new for Ryan,” Perno said. “He’s been a staple in our program for three years, hasn’t missed a start. I said it the first day we got out here and I said it two months ago, he’s our heart and soul, and he played like it today.”


Miami got all its runs via the long ball. Jemile Weeks hit his 12th homer in the first. Blake Tekotte’s 12th dinger was a two-run shot in the third that put the Hurricanes ahead 3-1.