06/13/10 1:51 AM ET
Draft picks compete in NCAA Regionals
By Bailey Stephens and Rhett Bollinger / MLB.com
After being beaten by TCU in the opener of the Super Regionals on Friday, Texas responded by leveling an offensive onslaught to win Game 2, 14-1, powered by the Reds' 47th-round pick, Tant Shepherd, who tallied three RBIs as part of a 4-for-5 game. The Longhorns picked up 14 runs on as many hits, scoring early and often. TCU got 3 2/3 scoreless from starter Steven Maxwell, a 12t-round pick of the Twins, before the Longhorns broke it open against the 'pen.
It'll be interesting to see who Texas turns to in the deciding game of the Super Regional, with several recent draftees in the mix. They'll still have Brandon Workman, taken in the second round by the Red Sox, available. And Tigers first-round supplemental pick Chance Ruffin has big-game experience and could be ready to come on if anything gets dicey.
Behind a balanced offensive attack and strong starting pitching, the Commodores of Vanderbilt beat Florida State, 6-2, on Saturday and evened the Tallahassee Super Regional at a game each. Aaron Westlake, a 22nd-round selection of the Blue Jays, went 1-for-4, but got his team off on a good start with an RBI groundout in the first. The Seminoles got solid pitching, but were victimized by three errors. The two teams will meet again on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET to decide who continues on to Omaha.
Virginia, meanwhile, downed Oklahoma, 3-2, behind home runs from Braves draftee Phil Gosselin and Pirates draftee Dan Grovatt. Virginia will look to close it out on Sunday at 1 p.m., while the Sooners have to win two straight over the host Cavaliers to advance.
South Carolina also emerged victorious on Saturday with a 4-3 win over No. 4 national seed Coastal Carolina behind a solid performance by right-hander Blake Cooper, who was drafted in the 12th round by the D-backs. Cooper allowed three runs over seven innings to get the win for South Carolina, which plays Game 2 at 1 p.m. on Sunday at Coastal Carolina.
South Carolina and Vanderbilt were far from the only Southeastern Conference schools to win on Sunday, as Alabama and Florida were all also winners on Sunday.
Alabama beat Clemson, 5-4, with a solid outing by Brewers second-rounder Jimmy Nelson, who allowed four runs over 6 2/3 innings. Jake Smith, a 15th-round selection by the Phillies, added a home run for the visiting Crimson Tide, who have a chance to advance with a win on Sunday at 7 p.m.
Florida eliminated Miami with a 4-3 win in 10 innings behind a game-winning RBI double by Austin Maddox, while Mets fifth-round pick Matt den Dekker went 1-for-2 with two runs scored. The win sends that Gators to the College World Series for the first time since 2005, while the host Hurricanes were sent home early.
Arizona State also won in dramatic fashion with a walk-off hit by Deven Marrero in the 12th inning of a 7-6 win over Arkansas. The Sun Devils, who host Game 2 on Sunday at 10 p.m., also got a home run from Angels eighth-rounder Kole Calhoun in the win.
Also out west, UCLA avoided elimination with an 11-7 win over Cal State Fullerton in Los Angeles. Reliever Dan Klein, who was drafted in the third round by the Orioles, picked up the win by tossing 2 1/3 scoreless innings. The two teams will meet again on Sunday in an elimination game at 10 p.m.
Bailey Stephens is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.