UCLA starter Adam Plutko held Mississippi State to a run on four hits in six innings and UCLA survived pressure from the Bulldogs for a 3-1 victory in Game 1 of the College World Series Finals Monday night. Plutko retired nine consecutive to start the game, worked out of trouble twice before turning the game over to the bullpen in the seventh. The Bulldogs (51-19) left runners in scoring position four of the last six innings.
The Bruins (48-17) are one win from their first national championship in baseball and the school’s record 109th in a team sport. Miss. St must win Game 2 on Tuesday night to keep alive its hopes for its first NCAA title in any sport.
If you thought SEC fans were rabid about football, they are just as wild about baseball. An estimated 8,000 Mississippi State fans were at TD Ameritrade Park. Their team almost gave them something to cheer about in the ninth, after C.T. Bradford and pinch-hitter Sam Frost singled to put runners on first and second with one out against closer David Berg.
However, Berg got Nick Ammirati to fly out, and pinch-hitter Jacob Robson ended the game with comebacker to Berg, who sprinted toward first base before underhanding the ball to Pat Gallagher. Berg earned his NCAA-record 24th save in 1.2 innings of work.