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NCAA Tournament Regionals Friday Scores & Analysis



Baseball America's home for scores and analysis from the opening day of the 2019 NCAA Tournament. 

Follow along with the scores for now, then check back as Joe Healy offers his thoughts on. a full slate of action later in the day. 

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TIME LOWER SEED HIGHER SEED WINNER SCORE REGIONAL
FINAL (2) Florida Atlantic (3)Florida State Florida State 13-7 Athens
FINAL (2) Auburn (3) Coastal Carolina Auburn 16-7 Atlanta
PPD (2) NC State (3) Campbell     Greenville
FINAL (2) Arizona State (3) Southern Miss. Southern Miss. 15-3 Baton Rouge
FINAL (2) Indiana State (3) McNeese State Indiana State 6-5 Nashville
FINAL (1) Mississippi State (4) Southern Mississippi State 11-6 Starkville
FINAL (2) UConn (3) Nebraska Nebraska 8-5 Oklahoma City
FINAL (1) Arkansas (4) Central Connecticut Arkansas 11-5 Fayetteville
FINAL (2) Indiana (3) Illinois State Illinois State 8-7 Louisville
FINAL (1) North Carolina (4) UNC-Wilmington N. Carolina 7-6 Chapel Hill
FINAL (2) Baylor (3) Loyola-Marymount LMU 3-1 Los Angeles
FINAL (2) Creighton (3) Michigan Michigan 6-0 Corvallis
FINAL (2) Illinois (3) Clemson Clemson 8-4 Oxford
FINAL (1) Stanford (4) Sacramento State Stanford 11-0 Stanford
FINAL (2) Texas A&M (3) Duke Duke 8-5 Morgantown
FINAL (1) Texas Tech (4) Army Texas Tech 11-2 Lubbock
PPD (1) East Carolina (4) Quinnipiac     Greenville
FINAL (1) Louisville (4) Illinois-Chicago Louisville 5-3 Louisville
FINAL (2) California (3) TCU TCU 13-2 Fayetteville
FINAL (1) Georgia (4) Mercer Georgia 13-3 Athens
FINAL (1) Georgia Tech (4) Florida A&M Georgia Tech 13-2 Atlanta
FINAL (1) LSU (4) Stony Brook LSU 17-3 Baton Rouge
FINAL (1) Oklahoma State (4) Harvard Oklahoma St. 2-0 Oklahoma City
FINAL (2) Tennessee (3) Liberty Liberty 6-1 Chapel Hill
FINAL (1) Vanderbilt (4) Ohio State Vanderbilt 8-2 Nashville
FINAL (2) Dallas Baptist (3) Florida Dallas Baptist 11-8 Lubbock
FINAL (2) Miami (3) Central Michigan CMU 6-5 Starkville
FINAL (1) Ole Miss (4) Jacksonville State Ole Miss 16-2 Oxford
FINAL (1) West Virginia (4) Fordham West Virginia 6-2 Morgantown
FINAL (1) Oregon State (4) Cincinnati Cincinnati 7-6 Corvallis
FINAL (2) UC Santa Barbara (3) Fresno State Fresno State 9-2 Stanford
FINAL (1) UCLA (4) Omaha UCLA 5-2 Los Angeles

 

Offensive Outbursts

— Florida State got the final regional appearance of the Mike Martin era off to a quick start with a 13-7 win over Florida Atlantic. The Seminoles clubbed six home runs, including one each from center fielder J.C. Flowers and right fielder Reese Albert and two apiece from left fielder Tim Becker and third baseman Drew Mendoza. Becker's story is an amazing one. The senior spent the previous three seasons playing on FSU's club baseball team, and his two homers on Friday are the first two of his career. 

— The Atlanta Regional was predicted to be one of the most offensive regionals this weekend, and a 16-7 win for Auburn over Coastal Carolina meant that it lived up to that billing, at least through one game. The Tigers scored in each of the last five innings, including a five-run eighth inning that really put things out of reach. Right fielder Steven Williams went 4-for-5 with a home run and five RBI to pace the Auburn attack, and left fielder Judd Ward and second baseman Ryan Bliss combined for six hits out of the top two spots in the order. A matchup between Auburn righty Tanner Burns and a powerful Georgia Tech offense will be one of the highlights of Saturday evening's games. 

— Georgia wasted little time jumping on Mercer in the first game of its home regional on the way to a 13-3 win. It scored eight runs in the first inning, with the big blow coming on a grand slam off the bat of center fielder Tucker Maxwell. Two innings later, the Bulldogs scored five more runs, including three on a three-run homer from Aaron Schunk, to really put the game out of reach. 

— In front of a loud home crowd, Louisiana State jumped on Stony Brook, eager to make sure there would be no repeat of 2012, when the Seawolves won a super regional against the Tigers at Alex Box Stadium. LSU put up a crooked number in each of the first five innings, including a five-spot in the first inning thanks in large part to a three-RBI double from catcher Saul Garza. In other news, LSU outfielder Antoine Duplantis is currently tied with Tigers legend Eddy Furniss for the program's all-time hits record. With at least two more games ahead of LSU, it's a safe assumption that he'll break that record this weekend. 

— In an apparent attempt to prove that its inclusion was not an error on the part of the selection committee, Texas Christian took it to California in a 13-2 win in the Fayetteville Regional. Holding on to a modest 3-1 lead after five innings, TCU exploded for six runs in the sixth, and then poured it on with four more in the ninth. DH Hunter Wolfe went 3-for-5 with two doubles, a home run, and four RBI and center fielder Johnny Rizer chipped in with a 3-for-6 day that included a home run and three RBI. The win sets up a tasty Saturday night matchup between Horned Frogs lefty Nick Lodolo and a physical Arkansas offense. 

— Mississippi didn't mess around with its opener in the Oxford Regional, as they put it on Jacksonville State 16-2. Against JSU righthander Garrett Farmer, the Rebels scored ten runs (five earned) on eight hits, four walks, and one costly error. Eleven different Ole Miss hitters had at least one hit, as head coach Mike Bianco was able to empty the bench as the game wore on. Repeating this type of offensive performance in a winner's bracket game Saturday against Clemson and its ace lefty Mat Clark will be a tougher task. 

Pitching Gems

— One week after throwing 7.1 no-hit innings with 12 strikeouts against Rice in the Conference USA Tournament, Southern Miss freshman righty Gabe Shepard did a really nice job against an Arizona State offense that is among the most physical in the country in a 15-3 win. He threw 5.2 innings, giving up six hits and two runs, and thanks to a 12-run fifth inning from the Golden Eagles' offense, he exited the game with the result well in hand. 

— To kick off the Corvallis Regional, Michigan righthander Karl Kauffman gave us the best pitching performance of the early round of games Friday in a 6-0 Wolverines win over the Creighton Bluejays. Kauffman threw 8.2 innings, giving up six hits and two walks with seven strikeouts, all against a really good Creighton offense. Michigan is a very talented team that you get the feeling hasn't played its best baseball yet, but now would be a good time. 

— Stanford righthander Brendan Beck made sure that Sacramento State was not going to pull an upset on Friday night. He threw seven shutout innings against the Hornets, giving up three hits and three walks with five strikeouts as part of the Cardinal's routine 11-0 win. 

— Texas Tech righthander Micah Dallas played a huge role in steadying the Red Raiders' rotation this season, and he came through in a big way in Tech's 11-2 win over Army to get the Lubbock Regional underway. He threw seven innings against the Black Knights, giving up three hits and one unearned run with one walk and seven strikeouts. Texas Tech's offensive performance could also be classified as an outburst, as it jumped out to a 6-0 lead after three innings and ended up collecting 16 hits when it was all said and done. 

— In a 13-2 win over Florida A&M to begin its home regional, it might be Georgia Tech's run total that stands out at first glance. But given that the bigger question for the Yellow Jackets is how well they will pitch throughout the weekend, what righthander Amos Willingham did on Friday evening is the bigger story. He got through six innings, giving up six hits and two runs, all while his offense piled up runs. His effort not only led Georgia Tech to a win, but it will help set up the bullpen for success the rest of the way. 

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North Carolina First Baseman Aaron Sabato Joins The College Podcast

UNC first baseman Aaron Sabato joins us to talk about the Tar Heels and his preparation for the 2020 season.

Upset Alert

— It was a big ask for Illinois State to take down Big Ten champion Indiana and its high-powered offense on day one of the Louisville Regional, but they took care of business with an 8-7 victory. The Redbirds' offense pounded out 14 hits and seven runs against IU righty Pauly Milto, and on the mound, ISU lefty Brent Headrick struck out 14 Hoosiers in six innings of work, all while holding them to two runs on three hits. Indiana made a late push with a five-run seventh inning against the Illinois State bullpen to tie it 7-7, but an RBI double off the bat of right fielder Joe Aeilts in the top of the eighth put the Redbirds up for good. 

— Three seed Loyola Marymount pulled off a tough trick in shutting down a talented Baylor offense on the way to a 3-1 win Friday afternoon in Los Angeles. Righthander Codie Paiva got the start for the Lions and threw 7.2 innings, giving up four hits and one run with one walk and five strikeouts. Closer Nick Frasso came on behind Paiva and retired the final four batters with little incident. It was an impressive way for LMU to win its first regional game since it upset host Cal State Fullerton in the first game of its last regional trip in 2000. 

— Central Michigan extended its winning streak to 19 games with a 6-5 win over Miami to move to the winner's bracket of the Starkville Regional. It was a total team effort on offense for the Chippewas, as all nine starters had at least one hit, led by a 3-for-5 day for third baseman Zach Heeke and a three-RBI performance from first baseman Evan Kratt. Tied 5-5 going to the ninth inning, CMU right fielder David Cole singled home center fielder Zach Gilles to give the Chippewas a lead that they wouldn't relinquish. 

— With all of its high-end pitching, Tennessee was a trendy pick to come out of the Chapel Hill Regional, but after a 6-1 loss to Liberty, the degree of difficulty for pulling that off has gone through the roof. The Flames set the tone early with a two-run homer off the bat of catcher Jonathan Embry in the first inning, and got great pitching from lefthander Mason Meyer, who threw 6.2 innings, giving up five hits and one run. The win moves Liberty to a winner's bracket game Saturday against a team it has already beaten once this season, North Carolina. 

— In a key game in what might be the toughest regional of them all, Fresno State ran away and hid from UC Santa Barbara on the way to a 9-2 win. The Bulldogs got off to a quick start, scoring five runs in the first inning alone, including two on an RBI single from first baseman Zach Presno, and they never looked back. On the mound, hard-throwing righthander Ryan Jensen threw 7.2 innings, giving up four hits and two runs with one walk and eight strikeouts, against a tough Gauchos lineup, no less. 

— The biggest upset of the day came in the last game to go final, as Cincinnati, a team that needed the auto bid in the American Athletic Conference just to get into the field of 64, took down defending national champion and 16th seed Oregon State by a 7-6 score. The Bearcats just wouldn't be denied. After they saw what was a 5-2 lead evaporate and become a 6-5 deficit, they tied it up 6-6 with a run in the top of the eighth. And then in the ninth, Cincinnati got an RBI double from right fielder A.J. Bumpass, just the latest hit in a  5-for-5 game, to take the lead again. Things are upside down in the Corvallis Regional right now, as Oregon State and Creighton, the one and two seeds, will be playing early tomorrow to avoid being eliminated, while one of Michigan or Cincinnati will move into the driver's seat at 2-0 before it's all said and done. 

Odds and Ends

— If you knew coming into the day that Connecticut would collect 19 hits against Nebraska, you probably would have felt pretty good about the Huskies winning the opener of the Oklahoma City Regional, and you certainly would have assumed they'd score more than five runs. But neither happened, as the Huskers came away with an 8-5 win. The stat that perhaps best illustrates why UConn came up short is that they went 3-for-16 as a team with runners in scoring position. Just one or two more hits in those situations and it would have been a very different ballgame. 

— The final score, an 11-6 Mississippi State win, won't tell the whole story of how close Southern came to pulling a monumental upset in Starkville. The Jaguars went up 4-2 after four innings, and then after MSU came back to take a 6-4 lead, Southern tied it again in the seventh on a two-run homer by second baseman Johnny Johnson, and then threatened again in the frame before leaving two men stranded. They are undoubtedly disappointed not to have pulled the upset, but credit to Kerrick Jackson's Jags for putting up quite the fight. 

— If you are a fan of a team hosting a regional, it might be frustrating when the decision gets made that it will be playing in the early game rather than the game in prime time on Friday. But take what happened in the Greenville Regional today as a lesson in why that might be what's best for the team. Host East Carolina's game got pushed to Saturday due to a lengthy weather delay in game 1. Now, ECU will have to play two games on one day at some point over the weekend if they are to win the regional, after spending much of Friday evening in a holding pattern wondering whether or not they were going to play. It's a tough dilemma, as a staff is forced to choose between maximizing attendance and atmosphere or maximizing the chance that the game gets completed. Ultimately, it's guesswork, and the decision backfired on the Pirates this time around.

— Even if you are a North Carolina fan, you have to feel for UNC-Wilmington, given the way the Tar Heels' walk-off win over the Seahawks went down. A back-and-forth affair ended up going to the bottom of the ninth with UNCW leading 6-5. UNC tied it in the bottom half of the inning and was still threatening when a weather delay struck. After several hours of waiting around for the bad weather to clear, the teams came back out, and within a matter of minutes, the Tar Heels walked off with a 7-6 win. But wait, there's more. It wasn't just that the Seahawks got walked off after waiting all that time for the game to resume. What makes it a gut punch loss is that the winning run came home when UNC appeared to miss a sign on a suicide squeeze, UNCW got Danny Serretti caught up in a rundown between third and home and proceeded to throw the ball away, allowing the run to score. 

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