NCAA Tournament Super Regionals Results At A Glance
Friday Super Regionals Recap
Louisville Super Regional: No. 7 Louisville 14, No. 10 East Carolina 1
The Cardinals wasted little time jumping out to a one-game lead in the Louisville Super Regional. After the teams traded zeroes for the first three innings, Louisville got to East Carolina lefthander Jake Agnos for four runs in the fourth inning, including three on an RBI double from DH Danny Oriente. But the Cardinals weren’t done there, as they added five runs in the fifth, three in the sixth, and two runs in the seventh inning to run away and hide from the Pirates. On the other side, Louisville lefty Reid Detmers was outstanding, allowing just six hits and one run—coming on a Spencer Brickhouse solo home run—in seven innings of work. Now, the Cardinals are just one win away from their fourth College World Series appearance in seven years.
Lubbock Super Regional: No. 8 Texas Tech 8, No. 9 Oklahoma State 6
Texas Tech got to work quickly against Oklahoma State righthander Jensen Elliott. After a scoreless first inning that included a couple of rocket line drives right at Oklahoma State defenders, Texas Tech broke through for two runs in the second inning on a two-run single by center fielder Dylan Neuse. The Red Raiders then scored one run in the third on a Cody Masters solo homer and added three runs in the fourth, including two on a back-breaking error by Oklahoma State center fielder Trevor Boone. The Cowboys would have escaped the fourth inning without harm had Boone been able to track down the fly ball cleanly. Oklahoma State continued to claw its way back into the game, however, but a late Red Raiders run in the seventh on a solo home run from Josh Jung and one more in the eighth on a Brian Klein sacrifice fly kept the lead intact. With one more win this weekend, Texas Tech will be in Omaha in back-to-back seasons for the first time in program history and for the fourth time in the last six years overall.
Los Angeles Super Regional: Michigan 3, No. 1 UCLA 2
For eight innings, Michigan righthander Karl Kauffman dazzled on the mound, dominating a physical UCLA lineup that hasn’t often struggled to put up runs this season. Through those eight frames, Kauffmann shut out the Bruins, striking out eight, allowing just one hit and one walk along the way. He couldn’t quite finish it off, however, as UCLA came alive at the last minute. After a walk and a couple of infield singles, first baseman Michael Toglia lined a single into right field to score two runs, and Michigan’s lead was trimmed to 3-2. But righthanded reliever Jeff Criswell came in and shut the door, getting Jake Pries on a pop up to short and striking out Jack Stronach swinging. With another win this weekend, Michigan will be headed to Omaha for the first time since 1984.
Nashville Super Regional: Duke 18, No. 2 Vanderbilt 5
It’s one thing to land one punch on the heavyweight champ, as Duke did by scoring seven runs on Vanderbilt righthander Drake Fellows in four innings. But it’s another thing to take a punch from the champ, as it did when Vandy came back to make it a 7-5 game, and then counter with the knockout blow. But that’s precisely what the Blue Devils pulled off in exploding for a 10-run eighth inning against the Commodores’ bullpen that put Friday’s game out of reach. All told, that marathon inning featured six hits, three hit batters, two walks and two wild pitches. Duke leadoff hitter Joey Loperfido had a big game, going 3-for-5 with a double and two RBIs. Third baseman Erikson Nichols and left fielder Kyle Gallagher each had two hits and drove in four runs, with Gallagher collecting a home run as well. After falling just short against Texas Tech last season, Duke is once again one win away from its first trip to the College World Series since 1961.
Best Offensive Performance: Louisville
This was intended to be an individual honor, but how could you not give it to the entirety of the Cardinals’ lineup? They scored 14 runs on 18 hits, with seven different Louisville batters enjoying multi-hit games. Shortstop Tyler Fitzgerald led the way with a 4-for-5 performance that included a double and four runs scored, while both Danny Oriente and left fielder Jake Snider drove in three runs.
Best Pitching Performance: Karl Kaufmann, Michigan
When you consider the numbers, the stage, and the opposition, it’s hard to pitch any better than Michigan’s Karl Kauffman did against UCLA on Friday. He threw 8.1 innings, giving up four hits and two runs with two walks and eight strikeouts. But until the Bruins’ offense came alive in the ninth inning to score two runs on three hits and a walk, Kaufmann had held them to just one hit and one walk. One more pitching performance like that this weekend and Michigan very well could be on its way to the College World Series.
Houdini Award: Ben Gross, Duke
It’s not that Vanderbilt didn’t get to Gross in his start, because it did. In his 5.1 innings, the Commodores collected seven hits and walked five times, pushing five runs across along the way. But he did an outstanding job of wiggling out of trouble that could have made things so much worse. In the first inning, he put up a zero, stranding two Vandy runners. In the second, the Commodores plated two runs, but Gross left another runner stranded in scoring position. He stranded two more in the third and used a double play to erase a runner in the fourth, before Vanderbilt broke through again for two in the fifth and one in the sixth. The final line for Gross might not be particularly attractive, but it’s easy to see the game not getting away from the Commodores in the same way had they been able to take advantage of some of those opportunities early on.
Photo FInish: Michigan/UCLA
This one also goes to the dynamite game between Michigan and UCLA. For most of the game, Michigan was cruising with a 2-0 lead, and then it extended the lead to 3-0 with a run in the eighth on a sacrifice fly off the bat of DH Jordan Nwogu. But it got interesting with those two UCLA runs in the ninth, and that prompted Michigan to make a move to righthander Jeff Criswell to try to close it out. The first batter he faced was UCLA DH Jake Pries, a near .300 hitter with 11 homers on the season. Criswell got him to pop out to the shortstop in shallow left field. Not out of the woods yet, Criswell then had to deal with left fielder Jack Stronach, who is hitting well over .300 this season, but the righty got him swinging to end the game. The Wolverines walked the tight rope to finish it off, but finish it off they did.