Vanderbilt baseball eliminates Louisville, advances to College World Series finals against Michigan
The Vandy Boys are officially heading to the national championship series against Michigan.
Vanderbilt defeated Louisville 3-2 Friday night in the College World Series to win its half of the bracket. The Commodores improved to 3-0 in Omaha.
Vanderbilt starting pitcher Mason Hickman pitched a gem of a game, too, going six innings and allowing just two hits and no runs. Jake Eder replaced Hickman and allowed one earned run (another scored on a throwing error by Ty Duvall). The Cardinals scored both runs in the seventh inning to take the 2-1 lead.
Then, Vanderbilt came charging back in the top of the ninth inning. With one out, JJ Bleday walked and Ethan Paul hit an RBI double, tying the game at 2-2. Then, Pat DeMarco high-hopped a double down the third base line to score the go-ahead (and winning) run.
Louisville starter Luke Smith also pitched his heart out. Smith had all three pitches working Friday night — fastball, slider and changeup, and he recorded an impressive 10 strikeouts. Smith was pulled in the ninth for reliever Michael McAvene.
This was arguably the turning point in the game, though. Smith was dealing, but he had a few words for Julian Infante, which fired up the Vanderbilt dugout.
Lip readers: What you got? pic.twitter.com/ZLYOPzjBTn
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) June 22, 2019
Vanderbilt’s Tyler Brown closed the door in the bottom of the ninth.
The Wolverines, like Vandy, are 3-0 in Omaha, and they have their pitching staff fully rested. The national title series begins Monday in Omaha, Nebraska.