Porter sends Miss. St. to 5-4 CWS win over Indiana
Trey Porter drove in the go-ahead runs in the eighth inning, and Mississippi State took control of its bracket in the College World Series with a 5-4 victory over Indiana on Monday night.
The Bulldogs (50-18) need one win to reach next week's best-of-three finals. They're off until Friday, when they'll play Indiana (49-15) or Oregon State. Those teams play an elimination game Wednesday.
The Bulldogs erased a 3-2 deficit after Brett Pirtle and Wes Rea singled leading off the eighth against reliever Ryan Halstead (4-5). Pirtle beat Will Nolden's throw home to tie it on DeMarcus Henderson's liner into right.
Brian Korte took over for Halstead with two out, and Porter sent his 3-1 pitch into the right-center gap to score Rea and Henderson for a two-run lead.
Chad Girodo (9-1), who relieved starter Trevor Fitts with one out in the third, pitched a 1-2-3 eighth inning, but left in the ninth when Indiana threatened.
Porter had entered the game in the sixth inning as a pinch hitter. He gave the Hoosiers faithful a scare with a drive to the right-field warning track that Nolden caught to keep it a one-run game.
Porter, a .250 batter, didn't play in Saturday's 5-4 win over Oregon State and came into Monday with just two hits in his previous 14 at-bats since May 4.
Indiana, in the CWS for the first time, had its seven-game win streak end, but not until making things interesting in the last inning.
Chris Sujka, pinch hitting for Nolden, singled to lead off the ninth, and Sam Travis doubled off the wall in left center to put runners on second and third with one out. Sujka scored on Scott Donley's groundout, bringing on closer Jonathan Holder.
Michael Basil hit a chopper in front of the mound. Holder fielded it cleanly and bounced his throw to Rea at first, prompting a big fist bump between the two as they began celebrating.
Fitts, who had pitched only 26 innings and mostly in relief, went 2 1-3 innings before turning things over to Girodo, who struck out 10 over 6 1-3 innings.
Indiana freshman starter Will Coursen-Carr was solid in his 5 1-3 innings, allowing two runs on four hits and two walks.
Indiana had a chance to add to its 3-1 lead in the fifth after having runners on second and third with one out. But Nick Ammirati tagged out Travis at home and Girodo struck out Casey Smith.
The Bulldogs pulled to 3-2 in the sixth on Rea's single and were poised to get more with the bases loaded and one out. Ammirati popped out to shortstop before Porter's long fly to right ended the inning.