June 24, 2011

CWS Scores & Schedule


USC outlasts Virginia to reach CWS championship series

By Phil Stanton

CollegeBaseballInsider.com Co-Founder


(photos by Jimmy Jones)


OMAHA, Neb. – Pinch-runner Adam Matthews scored on an error in the bottom of the 13th as fourth-seeded South Carolina edged top-seeded Virginia 3-2 Friday evening at the College World Series in front of a sellout crowd of 25,882 at TD Ameritrade Park.


The Gamecocks (53-14) will face second-seeded Florida in the CWS championship series, beginning on Monday, June 27, at 7 p.m. CT.


Brady Thomas led off the 13th with a base hit for USC and Matthews pinch-ran for him. Peter Mooney bunted and UVa pitcher Cody Winiarski (6-4) made an errant throw to second as both runners were safe. Robert Beary also bunted and Winiarski’s throw to third was wide, allowing Matthews to score the game-winner.


“Beary had a great bunt and I slid in head first to third,” Matthews said. “And the umpire signaled I was safe. I got up. I didn’t know where the ball was. Coach [Chad] Holbrook and everyone was telling me to go, go, go, so it worked out well.”


Both teams had numerous scoring opportunities late. The Cavaliers stranded 10 over the final five innings. Virginia left the bases loaded in the 10th and filled the bases in both the 12th and 13th before double plays ended the threats. The Gamecocks left nine on base in the five innings prior to the 13th.


“So many things happened,” USC head coach Ray Tanner said. “They had their opportunities. We had our opportunities. We escaped a couple of jams. They got out of a couple. This game certainly could have gone either way, and we just kept hanging in there and we were fortunate to get a couple of breaks at the end.”


Matt Price (7-3) earned the victory, going 5.2 innings with seven hits, no runs, five walks and five strikeouts.


Virginia got on the board in the top of the second. Steven Proscia (left) drew a leadoff walk and moved to third on a single to right by Jared King. Kenny Swab grounded into a double play, scoring Proscia with the game’s first run.


Cavalier junior left-hander Danny Hultzen was dominant for three innings, allowing one hit and striking out eight. He was forced to depart prior to the fourth due to an illness.


USC took advantage against reliever Kyle Crockett in the bottom of the fourth. Christian Walker had a one-out double and stayed put on an infield single by Jackie Bradley, Jr. Adrian Morales was hit by a pitch to load the bases before Thomas delivered a two-run double to left to put the Gamecocks on top 2-1.


UVa tied it with an unearned run in the eighth. Chris Taylor reached on an error and was sacrificed to second. John Hicks sent a ball between the shortstop’s legs for an error, plating Taylor with the tying run.


“That was a baseball game of just a lot of emotions,” Virginia head coach Brian O’Connor said, “a lot of gut decisions, both teams taking chances at times. And it’s unfortunate that we had to come out on the wrong end of it.”