June 11, 2011
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Super Regional Results, Schedules & Capsules
Westlake Leads Vanderbilt West
Commodores reach College World Series for
By Jimmy Jones
Special to CollegeBaseballInsider.com
(photos by Jimmy Jones)
Tenn. - The local forecast called for possible inclement
weather, but it was Aaron Westlake who supplied the thunder with
three home runs to propel the Vanderbilt Commodores to a 9-3 win
over Oregon State to win their first-ever Super Regional.
The sixth-seeded Commodores (52-10) became the
second team to qualify for the 2011 College World Series, and
will face third-seeded North Carolina on Saturday, June 18, at
TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha.
"It's tough to put into words," VU coach Tim
Corbin said. "I first want to congratulate Oregon State. That
was a tough one tonight. They have been in this position before
and have come out on the winning side, so we were fortunate to
get through it. Moments like this are for Charlie Hawkins, Rod
Williamson, people who have been at Vanderbilt a long time and
have seen a lot of things.
VU, playing as the visitors, got on the board
first when Anthony Gomez singled and Westlake sent a searing
line drive into the right centerfield bleachers for a 2-0
The Beavers (41-19) cut it in half on an RBI
single by Parker Berberet to plate Ryan Dunn in the bottom half.
OSU tied the game in the third inning off of VU
starter Grayson Garvin using an infield error to push a run
across. Brian Stamps led off the frame with a bunt single,
reached second on a walk and third on VU's second error of the
game. Berberet picked up his second RBI with a sacrifice fly to
right field. Garvin would get out the inning with a strikeout
and a groundout to keep the game knotted at 2-2.
Baltimore Oriole draftee Jason Esposito's RBI
single to score Gomez in the fifth gave Vanderbilt back the lead
and they would not relinquish it again.
broke the game open in the sixth. Gomez's fourth hit of the
contest drove in Connor Harrell and Tony Kemp before Westlake
(right) then connected on the second pitch from Beaver reliever
Matt Boyd for a majestic shot that disappeared into the night to
give the hosts a commanding 7-2 lead.
Sophomore Will Clinard was outstanding in relief
of Garvin. He came on with two out and one on the fifth inning.
After a walk loaded the bases, Clinard got out of the inning
with a strikeout and a popup.
The right-hander would retire nine straight
batters before a home run by Carter Bell in the eighth. He
pitched the final 4.2 innings of relief and allowed only one run
to pick up the win.
Westlake finished the scoring with a two-run shot
in the eighth inning for his sixth RBI of the game.
"It's a good feeling to be part of a team that
brings joy to the community, brings joy to the university,”
Corbin said. “I'm really, really proud of the kids. You have
asked a lot of questions about 2007 and there was a large part
of me that wanted you to put that to bed because that moment
right there causes a lot of inner turmoil with coaches who have
seen it. Now you can bury that one very deep because it's 2011,
and what these kids have achieved to get to this point is
phenomenal, the consistency that they have shown throughout the
year, athletically and academically.
“We talked about the day we were going to open
Ameritrade Stadium. We said the stadium will be built then, but
will we be built then. We are built today. We are going, but the
train has another stop. We'll enjoy it for 48 hours and then get
back to work. I'm so proud of these kids. I love them, not just
because they won this game tonight, but because they are going
to have great memories."
The Beavers were led offensively by Bell with a
double and a solo home run.
"I'd like to, on behalf of our program and our
university Oregon State, congratulate Vanderbilt," OSU coach Pat
Casey said." They're a great team, we wish them a lot of luck
and they certainly earned their way to Omaha."