Historic Run for No. 8 Wake Forest Comes to Close
June 13, 2017
Wake Forest Athletic Communications (@WakeBaseball)
GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- In a roller coaster of a night, eighth-ranked Wake Forest won an 11-inning thriller to stay alive before dropping the winner-take-all Game 3 to fourth-ranked Florida at McKethan Stadium on Monday.
In the opener, a completion of the game which began on Sunday, the Gators (47-18) three times bounced back from deficits to tie the game, including in the eighth inning. In the 11th, Ben Breazeale delivered a two-run walkoff bomb to knot the series at a game apiece.
But after five homers in the opener, the Demon Deacons (43-20) were unable to scratch a run across against the pitching trio of Brady Singer, Tyler Dyson and Alex Faedo, who limited the Deacs to four hits, as the Gators clinched a spot in the College World Series.
Game 1: Wake Forest 8, Florida 6 (11 inn.)
The back-and-forth affair started at 3:26 p.m. Sunday and finished just under 24 hours later when Ben Breazeale blasted a two-run walk-off homer over the video board in right-center to keep Wake Forest alive.
The homer was Breazeale's second of the game, and he was joined by Johnny Aiello, who also hit two, and Gavin Sheets, who hit one, to set a new program NCAA Tournament record with five longballs in the game.
With the game tied at 6-6 in the 10th, Griffin Roberts entered and recorded two outs, but the Gators also loaded the bases. Colin Peluse (5-1) entered and recorded a punchout, and then a perfect 11th inning, to record the win.
Seven of the nine Deacon hitters recorded multi-hit efforts, led by Jonathan Pryor (3-for-4, walk) and Aiello (3-for-5, two homers). Stuart Fairchild (2-for-4, 2B, walk), Gavin Sheets (2-for-3, HR, three RBIs), Breazeale (2-for-3, two HRs, three RBIs), Keegan Maronpot (2-for-5) and Logan Harvey (2-for-5) added two apiece.
The walk-off homer was Wake Forest's first in more than three years since Nate Mondou hit one in 2014.
Game 2: Florida 3, Wake Forest 0
The Gators took advantage of three early runs and a stellar pitching effort to punch their ticket to Omaha.
Mike Rivera hit an RBI single in the second inning and JJ Schwarz knocked a two-run homer in the third to provide all the run support the pitching staff needed.
Brady Singer (2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 BB, 3 Ks), Tyler Dyson (5.0 IP, 2 H, 0 BB, 7 Ks) and Alex Faedo (2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 3 Ks) combined for the four-hit shutout on the mound for Florida.
The Deacon bullpen kept Wake Forest in the game, with Morgan McSweeney (2.0 IP, 3 Ks), Carter Bach (0.2 IP), Donnie Sellers (1.1 IP, 2 Ks) and Colin Peluse (1.0 IP, 2 Ks) each recording scoreless outings.
But Wake Forest's bats never heated up after a third-inning rain delay. Dyson entered for Florida and gave up a single to Keegan Maronpot on his first pitch before retiring the next 13 Deacons until a Gavin Sheets double in the seventh.
The Deacs brought the potential tying run to the plate for the first time in the eighth after a Bruce Steel walk and Jonathan Pryor single, but normal Friday starter Faedo recorded a strikeout on a 3-2 pitch to escape.
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