College World Series Championship Game 1
Florida 4, LSU 3 (Florida Leads Series 1-0)
WP: Brady Singer (9-5) LP: Russell Reynolds (1-2) S: Michael Byrne (19)
Behind a career-high 12 strikeouts from RHP Brady Singer and a three-run fourth inning, the Florida Gators were able to move one step closer to a potential championship in the finals of the NCAA College World Series with a 4-2 victory over the LSU Tigers.
Both starting pitchers were impressive to begin things, as Florida’s Singer and LSU RHP Russell Reynolds each threw three scoreless innings, scattering two hits and one hit apiece, respectively. However, Reynolds, who had only thrown 14.2 innings on the year and had never thrown more than three innings in an appearance in his career, struggled with command in the fourth, walking three consecutive Gators with one out to load the bases. This prompted LSU coach Paul Mainieri to lift Reynolds in favor of LHP Nick Bush. A sacrifice fly by Florida left fielder Austin Langworthy plated the first Gator run, and a two-out, two-run ground-rule double by third baseman Jonathan India extended the lead to 3-0.
Bush and Singer traded zeroes on the scoreboard until the bottom of the sixth, when LSU outfielder Antoine Duplantis drove a Singer pitch into the right-field bullpen, cutting the Florida lead to two runs with one out in the sixth inning. After a hit-by-pitch and a walk with two outs, LSU designated hitter Beau Jordan ripped an RBI single to left field, cutting the deficit to one run for the Tigers. Singer was able to retire catcher Michael Papierski on a fly ball to left field, retiring the side, and holding the lead for the Gators at 3-2.
Langworthy led off with a double in the seventh inning, and after advancing to third on a sacrifice bunt, catcher Mike Rivera lined an RBI single up the middle to add an insurance run for Florida. LSU battled back in the bottom of the eighth, as third baseman Josh Smith singled home right fielder Greg Deichmann to trim the lead back down to one run, but RHP Michael Byrne was able to get out of the eighth with no further damage. Byrne set down the Tigers 1-2-3 in the ninth inning, securing the win for Florida
Game two of the championship series will take place tomorrow night. First pitch for game two is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.