Vanderbilt wins Omaha opener in walk-off style, NC State up next


Vanderbilt players run in celebration after the team’s win over Arizona in the 12th inning of a baseball game in the NCAA College World Series on Saturday, June 19, 2021, in Omaha, Neb. (AP Photo/Rebecca S. Gratz)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN)- The Vandy Boys won their Omaha opener on Saturday night, but it didn’t come in regulation. Jayson Gonzalez hit a one-out, RBI single with bases loaded in the 12th inning, to give Vanderbilt the 7-6 win over Arizona.

“It was great. It’s just a dream come true to be here, be in this situation. We’ve all worked so hard to get to this moment. So it was a pretty special moment,” said Gonzalez.

With the win, the Commodores move to 5-0 in College World Series openers and are now 17-7 all-time at the College World Series.

“Just a tough ball game in a lot of ways,I don’t know if — I guess both sides felt like that thing would never end. But it did. We had to contain them, Vanderbilt head coach Tim Corbin. “I thought we did such a good job of that particularly after the first.”

Vanderbilt starter Kumar Rocker had a shaky first inning but recovered quickly, he finished going 5 2/3 innings and gave up five runs – three earned – on five hits. The junior struck out seven and 65 of his 100 pitches were strikes.

“I thought Kumar was really good. He righted himself and got deep into the ball game. And after that, Maldonado did a nice job of being able to contain them. He had to pitch out of a second-and-third, two outs when he came in. It became that anyway. We kind of messed around with the ball a little bit. But he did a nice job,” said Corbin.

The Commodores (46-15) are now in the winner’s bracket and will next play North Carolina State (36-18) at 6 p.m. Monday.

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