June 29, 2010
Bradley Shines in Omaha
Roth, Price Dig Deep for Gamecocks
USC Looks Like Champion Now
and Game Stories
College World Series Capsules
Merrifield's Hit in the
11th Gives Gamecocks National Title
By Phil Stanton
(Photos by Craig Jackson)
Neb. – Whit Merrifield had a single to right with one out in
the bottom of the 11th inning to score Scott Wingo from third
base and give South Carolina a 2-1 win over sixth-seeded UCLA
Tuesday evening in Game 2 of the Championship Series of the 2010
College World Series in front of 24,390 fans at Rosenblatt
It is the first national championship in baseball
for the Gamecocks (54-16).
It was the 61st and final championship at
historic Rosenblatt Stadium. Next year, the College World Series
moves to TD Ameritrade Park in downtown Omaha.
squared around on a 3-2 pitch and drew a walk against Dan Klein
to start the 11th. He moved to second on a passed ball and Evan
Marzilli (right) sacrificed him to third.
“With his count 3 and 2,” Gamecock head coach Ray
Tanner said, “I gave him the push bunt base hit to third base. I
never have done that my entire career. I just felt they had
moved back at third. In that situation with Klein out there
pitching as well as he was, I kept thinking it might be easier
to push the ball toward third base than it would be to get a
hit. Wingo gave me a double take, a triple take, and he got a
pitch low. He gets on, he moves up with the passed ball, bunts
to third and Whit goes the other way. Just gotta find a way to
After striking out in the ninth against Klein,
Merrifield sent a 2-0 pitch to right to drive in Wingo with the
“He threw me fastballs, which I would have loved
to have seen my first at-bat,” Merrifield said. “His fastball
still had some life on it. The first two he threw me were low in
the dirt. The 2-0 pitch was still a pretty good pitch. I just
happened to get the barrel on it and it found a hole.”
Price (5-1) (left) earned the win for South Carolina, pitching
2.2 scoreless innings with one hit, one walk and three
Klein (6-1) allowed one hit over 3.1 innings with
one run, two walks and four strikeouts in absorbing the loss.
South Carolina starter sophomore left-hander
Michael Roth pitched the first five innings and allowed six hits
and one earned run with two walks and three strikeouts. He made
77 pitches, 52 for strikes.
Never would I have ever thought that I was going
to start a game here in Omaha,” Roth said. “It's been great. I'm
honored that they called upon me. It's a wonderful feeling to be
a starting pitcher of the final game in Omaha.”
Jose Mata (2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 K), Tyler Webb (0.1 IP)
and John Taylor (1.0 IP) held the Bruins in check prior to the
arrival of Price.
UCLA starter junior left-hander Rob Rasmussen
tossed six scoreless innings with six hits, four walks and five
strikeouts. Erik Goeddel allowed two hits and one unearned run
in one inning with one strikeout.
The Bruins (51-17) finally broke through in the
top of the fifth. Trevor Brown started the inning with a base
hit to deep short in which he just beat the throw to first.
After he was sacrificed to second, Niko Gallego singled to left
center to bring Brown home with the game’s first run.
South Carolina eventually tied it in the eighth.
Pinch-hitter Brady Thomas had a leadoff single and was replaced
by pinch-runner Robert Beary, who moved to second on a fielder’s
choice. Bobby Haney hit a bouncer to first that was mishandled,
allowing Beary to score the tying run.
The Bruins had a chance to take the lead in the
top of the ninth. With two outs, Chris Giovinazzo reached on an
error and moved to third on a base hit by Brown. Steve Rodriguez
walked before Price struck out Gallego to end the threat.
strikeout Matt had, I've seen him do that before,” Tanner said.
“When you've got the stuff that Matt does, he's going to make
some pitches. And it's not easy to lay off, especially in that
Klein was dominant in the bottom of the ninth. He
struck out Merifield swinging, fanned Jackie Bradley Jr. looking
and got Christian Walker to foul out to the catcher to send the
game to the 10th.
Both teams got runners on in the 10th, but could
not score. UCLA went down in order in the top of the 11th.
Marzilli, Walker and Haney
each had two hits for the Gamecocks. Wingo drew three walks.
Brown, Beau Amaral and Brett Krill each had two
hits for the Bruins, who stranded 10 in the game.
just couldn't knock the door down and get a couple of runs
early,” UCLA head coach John Savage said. “And it might have
been the difference in the game. But, the national championship
is supposed to be played like that. And we came up short
tonight. But we're very proud and look forward to the future.”