No. 2 Stanford Forces Game Three
STANFORD, Calif. – No. 2 Stanford's offense plated two runs in the first inning and six more in the second to claim an 8-2 lead after two before the Cardinal (46-16) held on for a victory by the same tally on Sunday afternoon to force a deciding game three of a super regional against Connecticut (50-15) on Monday.
Stanford will meet the Huskies again on Monday at 1 p.m. PT on ESPN2.
Junior Kody Huff got the scoring started for the Cardinal, designated as the visiting team, in the top of the first. Huff worked a 10-pitch at bat and shot a two-out, two-RBI single into center field to chase home Carter Graham and Brett Barrera.
After UConn responded for a run in the bottom of the first, Stanford exploded for six runs on six hits in the second – highlighted by a three-run home run from freshman Braden Montgomery. Montgomery's blast was his 18th of the season and second in as many games in the super regional.
Sophomore Drew Bowser also went deep in the inning – sending his 18th of the year out to left-center field. For Bowser, who went 2 for 4 at the plate, the homer was his third of the super regional and 10th in the last 11 games.
Stanford starter Ty Uber got a pair of outs in the first inning, but handed the ball over to sophomore Brandt Pancer after issuing a walk and a wild pitch that pushed runners to the corners. Pancer struck out Korey Morton to end the first and begin his 3 1/3 innings of work. The right-hander, who improved to 3-0 with the victory, allowed one run on one hit with three punchouts.
Sophomore Ryan Bruno was next out of the bullpen, contributing two scoreless frames with four strikeouts before junior Quinn Mathews went the final three hitless innings while striking out four to convert his eighth save.
Austin Peterson got the start for UConn, allowing seven runs on seven hits and two walks with two strikeouts over 1 1/3 inning. The right-hander was ejected by home plate umpire Casey Moser after being removed from the game. Four UConn relievers combined to piece together the final 7 2/3 innings, with Cole Chudoba contributing 5 2/3 frames.
Peterson dropped to 11-3 with the loss.
Stanford will look to punch its second consecutive ticket to Omaha with a victory on Monday. Monday's winner-take-all game will be the fifth elimination game that the Cardinal has played in the last nine days. Stanford won a pair of games vs. No. 20 UCSB and No. 13 Texas State on Sunday of last week in the Stanford Regional before defeating the Bobcats 4-3 in the regional final last Monday.