One Win to Go for UCLA

The UCLA Bruins let several scoring opportunities go by, but still relied on outstanding pitching, superb defense, and a stadium built for Bruins’ baseball to take the first game of the best-of-three finals of the College World Series, 3-1.

Adam Plutko began the game in perfect fashion, retiring everyone the first time through the Mississippi State batting order. He was a bit shaky after giving up his first couple of hits, and was consistently high with his fastball throughout the game, but Bulldog hitters seldom laid off close pitches. A one-to-nothing

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game became 3-0 in the fourth inning, and the spacious dimensions of TD Ameritrade Park, with its 375-foot power alleys and prevailing wind generally blowing in, and sterling Bruin defense, all worked to neutralize the power of Hunter Renfroe, Nick Ammirati, the massive Wes Rea, and the rest of the powerful Bulldog lineup. In fact, the ONLY Bulldog run scored on a bases-loaded walk.

The Bruins have their biggest winner, Nick Vander Tuig (13-4), set to start tonight, while Bulldog head coach John Cohen apparently is saving his ace, Senior, Kendall Graveman, for his first professional start next year (ok, or for tomorrow if Mississippi state wins tonight). Ben Bracewell (1-1) or Will Cox (3-1) will get tonight’s start.

The Bruins are nine innings away from NCAA Championship number 109, and their FIRST EVER in baseball.

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