Power Surge Leads Trojans Past Georgia, 11-5
June 9, 2001
OMAHA, Neb. - Bill Peavey and Alberto Concepcion hit two home runs each Saturday and the No. 3-seeded USC Trojans defeated the No. 6-seeded Georgia Bulldogs, 11-5, in Game #3 of the 2001 College World Series. The Trojans registered season highs in hits (18) and home runs (six). The six home runs by USC tie them for second on the CWS all-time list for most home runs in a game.
USC (45-17) never relinquished the lead after Concepcion and Peavey hit back-to-back solo home runs in the first inning. The Trojans' first six runs came with two outs (27 of 47 for the postseason).
The Trojans will play the winner of tonight's Miami-Tennessee game on Monday (June 11) at 6 p.m. Central time (4 p.m. Pacific).
Mark Prior improved to 15-1 on the season for the Trojans after another strong effort. Despite allowing four runs, Prior struck out 13 and walked only one.
Prior, who has received three National Player of the Year awards this season, now has 202 strikeouts on the season. The 202 strikeouts are a school and Pac-10 Conference record and places him in a tie for 12th all-time in a season (tied with Ben McDonald for LSU in 1989 and Richard Lewis for Florida State in 1986).
'It was a good day for us,' said USC Head Coach Mike Gillespie. 'We got an outstanding performance from Mark Prior. We had a lot of good at bats. I was particularly pleased that our first six runs were scored with two outs.'
Jeremy Brown (7-4) took the loss for Georgia (47-21).
The Trojans joined LSU (6-1-98 vs. Mississippi State) and Florida State (6-18-99 vs. Stanford) with six home runs. LSU holds the record with eight, ironically, against the Trojans during the 1998 CWS. USC's 41 total bases in the game (eight singles, three doubles, one triple and six home runs) were the third-most in CWS history. USC, in its 1998 national championship win against Arizona State (21-14), had 42 total bases while Florida State also set the record against Stanford during the 1999 CWS (14-11 in 13 innings).
After the Trojans held a 2-0 lead, USC added three more runs in the second. Abel Montanez hit a double to right and advanced to third on a groundout by Josh Self. Brian Barre singled to right center to place Montanez. Barre stole second and Seth Davidson walked. Both runners scored on a two-run triple by Concepcion to finish the scoring.
Concepcion went 3-for-5 with a triple, home run and five RBI. Barre, Peavey and Anthony Lunetta also had three-hit games. Every member of the Trojans' starting lineup recorded at least one hit.
Prior ran into trouble in the fourth when David Coffey doubled and scored on shortstop Jeff Keppinger's two-run homer to left, the 17th of the season. It was only the fifth home run allowed by Prior this season and third in his last five starts. Doc Brooks singled and moved to third on a single by Kris Edge. Brooks scored when second base umpire Gus Rodriguez called a balk against Prior. The threat ended, however, when Prior struck out Tony Burchett and Jody Pollock.
'I felt good,' said Prior. 'I didn't have command of my curve ball that I did vs. Florida International (at the NCAA Super Regional). I thought (Jeff) Keppinger had a good plan against me.'
Keppinger went 2-for-5 with a triple, home run and three RBI against Prior.
Michael Moon led off the fifth with a solo shot and Peavey added his second of the game and seventh of the season to left to lead off the seventh.
'I think part of hitting is contagious,' said Peavey. 'When a player gets a hit, you ask him what he did when he gets back in the dugout. The team feeds off each other and I think that happened today.'
USC has homered in five straight games, producing 12 home runs in that span. This season, 35 of the Trojans' 50 home runs have been solo shots.
The Trojans completed their scoring in the eighth with a solo shot by Barre, his 13th of the season, and a two-run shot by Concepcion, his second of the game and sixth of the season.
Anthony Reyes, who did not pitch in the NCAA Super Regional, threw two innings in relief and retired the side in the ninth. Prior and Reyes combined to strike out 16 batters, which put them in a tie for third for most strikeouts in a CWS nine-inning game (the record is 19 by Clemson against Miami on May 31, 1996).
Today was the first meeting ever between the two schools. USC now has a 74-24 overall record at the CWS.
Monday's game will be broadcast in southern California on KMPC 1540 AM with Rory Markas and Justin Dedeaux calling the action. The game will also be simulcast on www.usctrojans.com.
Georgia 000-300-110 --- 5-10-0USC 231-010-13x --- 11-18-0
WP - Prior (15-1) LP - Brown (7-4)Prior, Reyes (8) and Concepcion.Brown, Friedman (3), Havel (8) and Burchett, Brooks (8).T - 2:59 ATT - 19,958
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