USM eliminated from Baton Rouge Regional
If the Southern Miss Golden Eagles were going to win their first NCAA Regional since 2009, they were going to have to win two games yesterday and another one today, neither of which came to pass.
However, USM did provide the college baseball world with one of the moments of the tournament in its elimination game versus Arizona State. Down 12-6 heading into the bottom of the eighth, the Black and Gold came back from the dead, scoring seven runs over the last two innings to advance to the regional championship on the back of Gabe Montenegro’s two-run walk-off single in the bottom of the ninth.
That secured a rematch with LSU in the late game, but it just wasn’t mean to be for the Eagles who gave up their 4-3 lead in a three run bottom of the seventh for the Tigers.
What a ride it was for Southern Miss who was just two wins shy of ending that decade long super regional drought. Southern Miss Head Baseball Coach Scott Berry said, “We had some opportunities there to hold the lead and even chip back into it, but LSU was just a little bit too much for us but I can’t thank our guys enough for the effort that they gave coming off from a long first game to come out here.”
Josh Lewis said, “Really, it’s a moment I’ve been waiting for and I’m glad I came out there and could give us a chance to win. It didn’t come out like we wanted to, it said a lot about us. We had guys go out there and just compete their butts off, and there’s a lot to bring to the table next year and we’re looking forward to it.”
By winning two games in the Baton Rouge regional, Southern Miss lives to see the 40 win plateau for the fourth year in a row.