One of the downfalls of pool play is that it can often lead to pointless games later in the week. While Saturday’s early game was essentially a semi-final, the other two meant nothing. Still, teams can use these games to build momentum for the NCAA tournament.
Game 12: Florida State grabs their spot in the Championship
Louisville – 0
Florida State – 6
The two teams were in a 0-0 deadlock for most of the game. Florida State finally broke the tie in the top of the sixth inning when they scored three runs which would have been enough to beat the Cardinals.
But the Seminoles added two more runs in the seventh and another in the eighth to seal their victory. Both teams posted similar stats including 8 runners left on base. The only difference between the two was the way Florida State capitalized on their opportunities later in the game.
Game 13: A reversal of fates gives Miami a win over the Irish
Notre Dame – 5
Miami – 6
Not even 24 hours after a tough loss in extras to NC State, the Hurricanes took the field looking to regain some confidence for the NCAA tournament. Notre Dame scored the go-ahead run in the top of the ninth and hoped that was enough. Trailing by one, Christopher Barr wasted no time tying the game. He homered on just the 5th pitch of the inning.
Miami would go on to load the bases with one out and Brandon Lopez at the plate. Lopez singled to right-center field to drive in the winning run. This time, it was Miami walking off with the win.
Game 14: Even with some key players out, NC State cruises past UVA
NC State – 10
Virginia – 2
Coming off their big win the night before, NC State got a chance to rest some of their stars. Even with those guys out, the Wolfpack scored an even ten runs on the way past Virginia. The Cavaliers took an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning, but NC State quickly responded with two runs of their own to take the lead.
Virginia tied up the game in the sixth, but NC State responded with eight runs which all but ended the Cavs chances at picking up a win. The Wolfpack improve to a surprising 3-0 on the tournament, which no one expected. Equally surprising is Virginia’s 1-3 performance. After their 11-0 rout of Georgia Tech, they almost topped Miami early in the week. They just never found a way to finish off these close games.