Tough, tough loss for the LSU Tigers Monday night in the College World Series as Wake Forest rallied back from a two to nothing deficit to beat the Bayou Bengals three to two. LSU failed to score with a runner at third base and no outs in the eighth inning, while the Demon Deacons pushed a run across in the bottom of the eighth and held on for the one run win. Tigers Coach Jay Johnson.
“Hats off to the pitching on both sides, they got a clutch hit there at the end and we did not, ” said Johnson.
The play of the game happened in the eight inning. Cade Beloso hit a weak grounder to Wake Forest star third baseman Brock Wilken who threw a one-hopper to the catcher Bennett Lee who tagged out Tre Morgan trying to score the go-ahead run. Morgan could have stayed at third, because there were no outs, but Johnson says Tre made the right decision.
“You have to send the runner there so we stay out of the double play and it was a heck of a play by Wilken, I mean if it skips, or if he throws it and it bounces off Tre. we are ahead 3-2 and we probably have runners on second and third,” said Johnson. “In championship environments as we said in our game on Saturday your dudes have to be dudes and he was a dude on that tonight.”
LSU plays Tennessee Tuesday night at 6 PM in an elimination game.
“Nothing changes for us mentally, we always go out there and try to win one pitch at a time, we always play like it’s our last time playing the game, so we are going to show up Tuesday and keep the same mentality, play like it’s our last time playing together,” said Morgan.
In order to get to the championship series, LSU will have to win tonight and then beat Wake Forest twice. Johnson says it can be done and he’s seen it first hand, once in 2016 and then in 2017 by LSU.
“I had a team in this position before, lost a 1-0 heartbreaker to Oklahoma State and won three consecutive games to play for a national championship, then the very next year this program did the same thing and they beat probably one of the best teams in modern college baseball history (Oregon State) twice to get that opportunity and I all have the faith in the world in our team that we can do that, so let’s stick to what we do well” said Johnson.