It seemed to be another pitching duel that has been so common during this College World Series. It was Indiana’s Will Coursen-Carr against Miss State’s Trevor Fitts. It was a close battle all the way to the end, but Miss State was able to scrape by with the victory.
Miss State looked to have the momentum early, jumping all over Coursen-Carr and his first three pitches. Pitch one: single to right by Frazier, pitch two: Detz gets hit and takes his base, pitch three: past ball moves the runners to second and third. Renfroe grounded into a fielder’s choice, and scores Frazier from third. At the end of the first State had a 1-0 lead.
But Indiana came back fighting, tying the game in the bottom of the second. Basil reaches after walking, gets to second thanks to a past ball, and scores when Smith singles to center. 1-1 ball game.
Indiana took the lead in the bottom of the third. Nolden singles to left, then Schwarber singles to left moving Nolden to third, and then a double by Travis scores Nolden, sending Schwarber to third. A Donley ground out scores Schwarber, and gives Indiana a 3-1 lead.
In the top of the sixth, Miss State started their comeback. Pirtle reaches on an infield single, and then moves to second after a wild pitch. Rea then singles to right, scoring Pirtle and advancing Rea to second after a throwing error. Score is now 3-2.Coursen-Carr is relieved by Indiana closer Halstead, who gets out of a serious jam, in which Miss State leaves the bases loaded.
Indiana looked like they had control, that is until the top of the eighth. Pirtle singles to center, followed by a single by Rea to put runners on first and third. Henderson singles to right, scoring Pirtle and moving Rea to second. Tie ball game, 3-3. It is then Halstead is taken out and replaced by Korte.
But then it was time for a lead change. When Ammirati grounded out to first, Rea moved to third and Henderson moved to second. Porter singles to right center, scoring both Rea and Henderson. Mississippi State now leads, 5-3.
However, Indiana made a slight comeback in the bottom of the Sujka singles to right, Schwarber then pops out to deep center field for the first out of the inning. Travis doubles to deep center field, putting runners on second and third. Donley grounds out to second, bringing one run in. 5-4 ball game. Girodo is then replaced by Holder to get the final out of the game. Basil grounds out to the pitcher to end the game. Miss State wins 5-4.
Coursen-Carr’s start was not terrible, but it was definitely what Indiana was hoping for. He went 5.1 innings, allowed only four hits, two earned runs, two walks, and four strikeouts. While those numbers aren’t bad, I’m sure the Indiana pitching staff was hoping their starter could go a little further in the game.
What must be applauded however, is the impressive outing by Miss State’s reliever Girodo. While their starter could only go 2.1 innings and gave up two earned runs, their reliever was practically perfect. Girodo went 6.1 innings, gave up five hits but only two earned runs, had one walk and ten strikeouts. Miss State must feel very comfortable they have a commanding arm like that in their bullpen. And then the closer Holder was able to come in and record the save.