Vanderbilt beats Stanford 11-6 in Game 1
The Vanderbilt Commodores took advantage of Stanford's sputtering start on Friday to beat the Cardinal 11-6 and put themselves one win away from their first College World Series berth since 2011.
"It's a pretty cool feeling, we just have to play how we're playing and everything will work out," Vanderbilt freshman Bryan Reynolds said.
Game 2 is Saturday.
Reynolds matched his career-best with four hits and two RBI.
"He's a guy that can do a little bit of everything," Vanderbilt coach Tim Corbin said.
Stanford, coming off a walk-off win in regionals at Indiana on Monday, couldn't have started much worse. The Cardinal walked five of Vanderbilt's first nine batters as the Commodores (45-18) took a 10-0 lead through three innings.
Cardinal coach Mark Marquess said starter John Hochstatter was out of sync in his "poorest outing" this season. The junior walked five and allowed five runs in one inning of work.
"We just gave them too much early," Marquess said. "Obviously, you can't give a quality team like Vanderbilt many free base runners, and we did."
Stanford (34-25) had strung together six straight runs in the fourth and fifth innings to pull to 10-6. Reynolds broke a stretch of three scoreless Vanderbilt innings with a hit to right to drive in Dansby Swanson in the bottom of the seventh.
Louisville edges Kennesaw St. 5-3
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville freshman Nick Solak hit a two-run double in the bottom of the eighth inning, helping the Cardinals rally to a 5-3 win over Kennesaw State on Friday in an NCAA super regional.
The Cardinals (49-15) scored three runs in the eighth to come from behind and move within a victory of their second straight College World Series berth and third since Dan McDonnell was hired as coach in 2007.
"I told the kids if we don't get the rally and fall up short, so be it," McDonnell said. "We turn the page and come back tomorrow. Fortunately, we got the rally late, got the fans excited, and it worked our way. This is baseball. There's lots of parity, and anything can happen."
Kyle Funkhouser allowed three runs — two earned — and three hits in seven innings for the Cardinals. He struck out seven and walked five. Kyle McGrath (2-1) got the win in relief.
The Owls (40-23), who have won 26 of their last 29 games, are one game from elimination in their first NCAA tournament appearance since transitioning from Division II in 2007. The teams play again Saturday. Reliever James Connell (7-4) took the loss.
Louisville took a 1-0 lead in the third after Kyle Gibson was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning, advanced to second on a groundout and scored on Solak's single.
Kennesaw State scored two runs in the fourth after Funkhouser issued back-to-back walks to begin the inning. The Owls took a 3-1 lead in the fifth when Cornell Nixon scored from second on a wild pitch and a throwing error by Gibson.
UC Irvine rolls past Oklahoma State 8-4
STILLWATER, Okla. — Taylor Sparks had four hits and scored twice, and Adam Alcantara's two-run single in the fourth inning gave UC Irvine a lead it would not relinquish in an 8-4 victory over Oklahoma State on Friday night in the NCAA super regionals.
After their upset win over national No. 1 seed Oregon State in last week's Corvallis regional, UC Irvine (39-23) carried an 8-1 lead into the bottom of the eighth inning before Oklahoma State (48-17) made it a little closer.
UC Irvine, in its fourth trip to the super regionals in the last eight years, is one win away from its first College World Series appearance since 2007, with Game 2 of the best-of-three series Saturday.
Oklahoma State pulled within four in the eighth after Tanner Krietemeier's three-run homer. The Cowboys continued to threaten, loading the bases again with one out, but Bryan Case grounded into a double play.