PLAYER OF THE GAME: LHP Jordan Montgomery, South Carolina -- The Gamecocks got plenty of great performances from Montgomery last season, but he rose to the occasion this spring, and put together yet another stellar start in the win over North Carolina. Montgomery, who can run his fastball up to 92, struck out three, walked one and allowed just four hits in a complete game shutout.
TURNING POINT: After dropping the series opener to the Tar Heels, it was interesting to see how the Gamecocks would come out in Game 2 on Sunday. Well, they certainly passed the test, scoring five runs in the second inning to take a 5-0, commanding lead. Tanner English had an RBI single on a button, shortstop Joey Pankake had a two-RBI double and Joey Pankake had a two-RBI single to cap things off in the inning.
WHAT THEY SAID: "Obviously our team played very well today for the most part. Jordan [Montgomery] was incredible. To shut out a team like North Carolina, that's an awfully hard task to do. He was terrific from pitch one. Tanner [English] made an incredible play there in the ninth inning. He also got a bunt down there that got a run in for us. He stole some bases. Joey [Pankake] had the big double down the line, [which] kind of gave us a little bit of breathing room there in the second inning. And Jordan was able to pitch around a couple errors there, three errors. That's how good he was. Usually when you make three errors against a team like North Carolina they are going to make you pay, but Jordan was just too good today. He was terrific. I've seen him do that before. I've seen him do it in high school and I've seen him do it in Omaha, so I can't sit up here and say I'm surprised. He's an unflappable kid and he was in total control today. That's a start and an outing that he will never forget. That being said, the series is now 1-1. We haven't really accomplished anything or won anything. We are not in a position where we can feel too good about ourselves. We have nine innings to go, and hopefully we can come out with some energy and play well tomorrow." -- South Carolina head coach Chad Holbrook
THE SKINNY: We've already talked about how well Montgomery threw for the Gamecocks, but how about how iffy Tar Heels starting pitcher Hobbs Johnson was? Johnson, like Emanuel in the opener, struggled against the Gamecocks, allowing five runs on five hits in 1 2/3 innings of work. Meanwhile, Reilly Hovis and Taylore Cherry were just OK. For the Gamecocks, Pankake finished the afternoon with a pair of hits and two RBIs, English had two hits and an RBI, along with a couple of great defensive plays, and second baseman Max Schrock, despite a poor defensive performance, finished the afternoon with three hits. For UNC, designated hitter Landon Lassiter had two of the Tar Heels' four hits.
PLAYER OF THE GAME: RHP Jeff Thompson, Louisville -- Thompson hadn't always been incredibly consistent, but he certainly has answered the call this spring. Thompson put together yet another dominance performance Sunday in the 2-1 win over the Commodores. The imposing right-handed pitcher had a good slider working, but the big key was spotting up his 91-93 fastball on the outside part of the plate against right-handed hitters. Thompson struck out nine, walked two and allowed just a run on three hits in seven innings of work.
TURNING POINT: With Thompson on the mound for the Cardinals and the quality of pitching staff for the Commodores, runs were going to be hard to come by in this contest. Well, the Cards got all the runs they needed in the second inning when Zack Wasserman hit an RBI single and Sutton Whiting had an RBI single as well. The Cards simply never looked back with Thompson leading the charge.
WHAT THEY SAID: "I think in 2007 when we went, we caught people off guard, even our fan base. I guess it's a little disappointing LSU made it yesterday because I'm afraid their fan base is going to take up all the hotels in Omaha, but I've been saying it since our leadoff banquet in January, we're going to represent. Our fans are going to represent and I think we're going to give LSU a run for their money there in fan support." -- Louisville coach Dan McDonnell
THE SKINNY: Louisville starting pitcher Jeff Thompson certainly put together a dominant performance, but the rest of the pitching staff also shined in the contest with Joe Filomeno, who left the game injured, Kyle Funkhouser, Nick Burdi and Cody Ege leading the charge. Meanwhile, for the Commodores, sophomore Tyler Beede was lifted after allowing two runs in 2 2/3 innings, while freshman right-hander Carson Fulmer allowed just two hits in 5 1/3 shutout innings of work. For the Cards from an offensive standpoint, outfielder CoCo Johnson recorded two hits, while designated hitter Jeff Gardner drew a pair of walks. UL is making its second appearance in the College World Series. Of course, UL made its first appearance in '07 in Dan McDonnell's first season with the program.
PLAYER OF THE GAME: RHP Andrew More, Oregon State -- The Beavers have gotten a big-time campaign from Moore, and he once again was brilliant in the 12-4 win over Kansas State. Moore tallied a career-high nine strikeouts in the win over the Wildcats, also allowing just three runs on six hits in eight innings of work.
TURNING POINT: After dropping the series opener in heartbreaking fashion, the Beavers left little doubt from the first inning on, scoring five runs in the first frame to take total control. Michael Conforto and Dylan Davis each hit homers in the inning, while Ryan Barnes had an RBI single, and catcher Jake Rodriguez added a two-RBI single. The Beavers never looked back.
WHAT THEY SAID: “It was definitely huge coming out with Michael Conforto and Dylan Davis getting the first two home runs. That was huge because it allowed me to kind of relax and just getting that energy going early on. I think we definitely fed off of that the entire game. The crowd was into it and the dugout was into it. I was able to go out there and be aggressive with early strikes.” -- Oregon State RHP Andrew Moore
THE SKINNY: The impressive start by Andrew Moore is well documented, but it was a complete performance for the Beavers. While Moore led the charge on the mound, leadoff hitter Tyler Smith led the way at the plate with four hits, a run scored and three RBIs along with a walk, while third baseman Kavin Keyes had four hits and scored four runs. Lastly, six more Beavers finished the night with two hits a piece, as the team as a whole had 12 runs on 21 hits. For the Wildcats, starting pitcher Blake McFadden didn't escape the first inning after allowing four runs on four hits.
PLAYER OF THE GAME: DH Scott Donley, Indiana -- The Hoosiers have had a magical campaign with Donley and plenty of others leading the charge. Well, Donley again rose to the occasion in Sunday's 11-6 win over the Seminoles, going 2-for-4 with a home run, two runs scored and two RBIs to help lead the offensive charge.
TURNING POINT: Florida State seemed to have all the momentum in the world, entering the bottom of the fifth inning having just tied the game at 5-5. However, as he has done so many times this season, Hoosiers first baseman Sam Travis rose to the occasion with a two-run home run, his 10th of the season. Indiana never looked back after that on the way to the Omaha clincher.
WHAT THEY SAID: "Every step of the way -- it's magical. I would say I don't want to sit back and look at it until everything is done. I think the best part is to just keep going and taking another step. It's also just so great having the family around, grandparents, and I'm doing this with my dad and I just can't put it into words." -- Indiana outfielder Casey Smith
THE SKINNY: Indiana imposing 6-foot-10 pitcher Aaron Slegers didn't have his best stuff, allowing five runs on nine hits in 4 1/3 innings of work, but young and talented pitcher Will Coursen-Carr rose to the occasion, allowing just a run on two hits in four innings and Ryan Halstead closed out the game for Tracy Smith's club. Meanwhile, FSU starting pitcher Scott Sitz had an uncharacteristically bad performance, allowing seven runs on six hits in 4 1/3 innings. For the Hoosiers from an offensive standpoint, Travis finished the contest with four RBIs, while Michael Basil had two hits and an RBI and Justin Cureton had two hits and two RBIs. With the win, Indiana will make its first trip to the College World Series, and the Big Ten's first since Michigan in 1984.
PLAYER OF THE GAME: RHP Ethan Ogburn, N.C. State -- Many will look to starting pitcher Logan Jernigan for simply allowing just a run on two hits in five innings, and that's fine. However, how about Ogburn's finish to the contest? He struck out six, walked no one and allowed just three hits in five shutout frames to lead the Wolfpack.
TURNING POINT: Lost in the mix of a 17-inning affair in Raleigh, N.C., is the fact the Wolfpack actually had to score three runs in the top of the ninth inning to keep the game going, tying the contest at 4-4 heading to the bottom of the ninth inning. the Wolfpack scored in the inning on a Jake Fincher RBI double, which included another run on an error by Rice right fielder Michael Ratterree, and a Tarran Senay RBI double to end the scoring. Though the game went several more innings, those hits obviously changed the momentum of the contest.
WHAT THEY SAID: "Kind of hard to figure out where to start. Been up here for a few days now, keep talking about where these guys have been, where we were at one point, where we wanted to go, how they keep plugging and grinding. There's a couple of other things I want to talk about, familiarity with dugout, routine, something we preach, Logan Jernigan, unfortunately broke his hand at the start of the season, he hasn't been back that long, we've only gone like 50, 45, 60, tonight, 70-75 pitches, his presence on the mound tonight was just phenomenal in a big game. My gosh, Ethan Ogburn, been here for four years, been a four-year starter, for N.C. State. This last half of the season, it hasn't always gone his way." -- N.C. State coach Elliott Avent
THE SKINNY: We've already talked about the jobs N.C. State pitchers Logan Jernigan and Ethan Ogburn did in the 17-inning victory, but how about hard-nosed reliever Chris Overman, who struck out two, walked one and allowed no hits in three innings of work. Though the Owls dropped a tough game to the Wolfpack, right-handed pitcher Jordan Stephens absolutely has something to build on for next season after allowing a run on eight hits in 6 1/3 innings, while gritty right-hander John Simms struck out eight, walked three and allowed a run on three hits in 7 2/3 innings of relief work. At the plate, Rice's Michael Aquino had four hits, including a home run, and an RBI, while for the Wolfpack, Fincher had two hits and two RBIs, Trea Turner had three hits, and outfielder Brett Williams had three hits. Additionally, Jake Armstrong and Logan Ratledge ended the night with two hits. N.C. State is making its second College World Series appearance, first since 1968.