June 22, 2012
Game 13 Notes
Gamecocks nip Razorbacks,
return to championship series
By Phil Stanton
Photo by Pete LaFleur, CollegeBaseball360.com,
OMAHA, Neb. – The champs get another
chance to repeat.
Two-time defending national champion South
Carolina edged Arkansas 3-2 Friday in the 2012 College World
Series in front of 22,184 fans at TD Ameritrade Park.
The No. 8 Gamecocks (49-18) will face Arizona in
the best-of-three championship series beginning on Sunday, June
24, at 7 p.m. CT. The Razorbacks finished 46-22.
“Obviously that game could have gone either way,”
said South Carolina head coach Ray Tanner. “That was one of
those typical SEC battles on this stage. And both teams had
opportunities to win.”
Junior right-hander Matt Price (5-4) allowed one
hit in three scoreless innings with five strikeouts to record
the victory. It was the fifth career CWS win for Price (pictured
“When I came in,” Price said, “I was trying to
control the game, keeping my tempo the same, and just go out
there and try to get the team a win.”
Junior right-hander Colby Holmes (2 IP, 3 H, 2 R,
2 K) worked into the third in the start for South Carolina.
Junior lefty Tyler Webb (2 H, 2 BB, 3 K) pitched four shutout
innings for the Gamecocks.
“We felt like for us to have a chance to win,”
Tanner said, “we had to get nine innings out of Holmes, Webb and
Price, two or three apiece, and it kind of worked out that way.”
Sophomore right-hander Colby Suggs (7-1) suffered
the loss, allowing 1 run in two hitless innings with three walks
and one strikeout. Junior righty D.J. Baxendale (4.1 IP, 4 H, 2
R, 5 BB, 2 K) pitched into the fifth for Arkansas.
The Razorbacks got on the board in the top of the
first against Holmes. Tim Carver had a leadoff single, was
sacrificed to second and scored on a base hit by Matt Reynolds
as Arkansas took a quick 1-0 lead.
Arkansas added to its lead in the third. Jake
Wise was hit by a pitch to start the frame and went to third on
a double by Carver. One out later, Reynolds lifted a ball to
right on which Adam Matthews made a great sliding catch. It
turned into a sac fly as Wise came in to make it a 2-0 game.
The Gamecocks tied it in the bottom of the fifth
against Baxendale. Tanner English led off with a single and
stole second. Chase Vergason drew a one-out walk. Joey Pankake
lined a single to center to drive in English with the first run.
Evan Marzilli walked and Christian Walker drew a base on balls
to force in Vergason with the tying run.
South Carolina took the lead in the seventh.
Pankake drew a one-out walk and moved to second on a passed
ball. Marzilli also walked. With two away, closer Barrett Astin
entered for Arkansas. L.B. Dantzler singled off the glove of
Astin to load the bases. Matthews walked to force in Pankake
with the go-ahead run.
“Honestly, I thought I better do something or I'm
never going to be able to live in Columbia again,” Matthews
said. “He threw me some good pitches that I watched. And he
threw me a good slider there at the end that I held off of and
fortunately I walked.”
Pankake finished with two hits for the Gamecocks,
while Carver went 2 for 4 for the Razorbacks.
“I thought it was a great college baseball game
again,” said Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn. “And if you like
outstanding pitching and outstanding defense, I thought it was
very well played. It could have gone either way.”