OMAHA, NE (WLOX) - Senior John Gatlin propelled Ole Miss (47-20) under the win column in a must-win Tuesday, belting a game-winning walk-off single in the bottom of the ninth to eliminate Texas Tech (45-21).
Ole Miss advances to Thursday's elimination game at 7:00 p.m. facing the TCU-Virginia loser.
Christian Trent worked 8.0 scoreless innings and gave up 6 hits, no runs and tossed 6 strikeouts in the no-decision.
Scott Weathersby (4-1) got the win in relief. He worked the ninth and gave up one run on one hit.
Cameron Smith (4-1) suffered the loss for Texas Tech. Pinch hitter Colby Bortles walked with one-out in the bottom of the ninth. He moved to second on a grounder to the pitcher off the bat of pinch hitter Brantley Bell. Smith had time to throw out Bortles at second, but he threw the ball into center field and Bortles quickly raced down to third base.
Aaron Greenwood came into the game to run for Bortles with Rebels at the corners. Ole Miss coach Mike Bianco called on senior John Gatlin to pinch hit for Dalton Dulin. Texas Tech changed its defense and brought in an extra infielder with three Red Rebels on the left side and two on the right.
Gatlin popped the ball over second base, the ball fell to the turf, enabling Greenwood to score on a walk-off single.
"It was just another low scoring close ballgame here,"said Bianco. "I thought both starting pitchers were terrific. Our guys seemed very composed coming back to the dugout in the bottom of the ninth. I'm just proud we've got a couple of freshman off the bench with great at-bats and of course John Gatlin gets a base hit."
The Rebels grabbed a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the seventh with a two-out single off the bat of Holt Perdzock that zipped by a diving third baseman down the line. Sikes Orvis who had reached on an error scored the games first run.
Texas Tech tied the game in the top of the ninth following a single and two stolen bases by pinch runner Zach Davis. Anthony Lyons hit a line-drive sacrifice fly ball to right field that plated Davis.
Ole Miss awaits the TCU-Virginia loser. The winners' bracket game had the Horned Frogs and Cavaliers tied 2-all in the top of the 13th inning.
The massive Ameritrade Park is proving to be too big for teams to generate much of an offense. Games are lasting too long. Pitching and small ball, bunts, stolen bases and sacrifice fly balls are proving to be the name of the game in Omaha.
Should they put up temporary fences in the outfield to make Ameritrade Park a more exciting arena to host the College World Series? I would give a thumbs up! Home runs are no longer a factor in Omaha.