LSU Comes On Late – Tigers Win Game 1
Watching LSU and Oklahoma last night in game one of the Baton Rouge Super Regional of the NCAA tournament was and exercise in excitement and awe. To say the starting pitchers for both schools were on top of their game would be an understatement.
Jonathan Gray, the Oklahoma ace , was as good as advertised. How good? He was the third overall pick the Major League Baseball Draft. LSU’s starter Aaron Nola, the SEC pitcher of the year, was every bit as good as Gray, in fact he was just a touch better.
Through 8 innings it was like watching two gunslingers mow down targets at the mound. Sure there were long fly balls, and some great defensive grabs in the field but for the most part it was witchcraft in the form of two of the best arms in college baseball.
In the top of the 8th it was Gray that blinked first, with a 2 and 0 count on Jacoby Jones, the Tiger 2nd baseman got a ball right where he wanted it. Jones drove the ball to the wall to earn his first triple of the year. LSU skipper Paul Mainieri elected to go to a pitch hitter, Tyler Moore. The decision proved to be a good one as Moore rocketed an RBI double into the field of play.
With a record crowd of 11,095 rocking The Box and the last two hitters spanking the ball hard that was all for Gray. He was removed from the mound and Oklahoma brought in a relief pitcher, Ralph Garza, to face the top of the Tiger order. Sean McMullen lined out to the short stop bringing up Mark Laird. Laird sent a shot just over the gloves of the Oklahoma infield and deep enough to score pinch runner Jared Foster.
Two runs and Aaron Nola were all the Tigers needed to finish off the night. The Tigers and Sooners will meet again today at 6pm. If the TIgers win, they pack their bags for the College World Series in Omaha Nebraska. An Oklahoma win would force a decisive game 3 to be played on Sunday.
Here are the highlights from Friday’s Game: