What a day it was for the state of Georgia on day one of regional play in the NCAA Baseball tournament. Of the three schools–Kennesaw State, Georgia Southern and Georgia Tech–two schools won their opening contest, while another was delayed until this afternoon due to weather.
In the Tallahassee Regional, it was the Owls and Eagles who were victorious in some pretty big upsets over the two higher-ranked teams. First, for Kennesaw State, they squeaked by the second seeded Alabama Crimson Tide, thanks to a Kal Simmons sacrifice fly to score Brennan Morgan in the top of the fifth inning, and 8.2 innings of five hit shutout baseball from Travis Bergen.
In the night cap, it was the fourth seeded Georgia Southern Eagles who shellacked the top seeded and regional host Florida State Seminoles, after the Eagles opened the game with a two run inning, scored single runs in the sixth and seventh and put a three spot in the ninth, on their way to a 7-0, two hit shutout over FSU. Dalton Busby had the best night offensively for Southern, going a perfect 3-for-3 with a run scored and two RBI. Ben Morgan, Aaron Mizell, Stryker Brown, Hunter Thomas and Garrett Champan all had two hits each, with Morgan, Mizell, Thomas and Champan also batting a run in. And, while the 7-0 win is impressive in and of itself, what’s even more impressive was that Sam Howard, who went the distance while tossing 137 pitches, allowed just two hits, four walks and ten strikeouts.
The Tide and Noles will face off in an elimination game today at one, while KSU and GSU will face off at five, with the winner punching their ticket to the Regional Championship.
The other Georgia school, Georgia Tech, got rained out and their opening game against Washington has been moved to today, with first pitch scheduled for two. All three of these games can be seen on ESPN3.com