Opening Day for the NCAA took place yesterday, and all 32 teams were in action, with some incredibly lopsided losses as hot bats ruled the day.
There was, of course, the 28-run, 4 hour 41 minute marathon between Arkansas and Auburn, which saw an already high-scoring 9-9 tie break out into an 18-10 win for the Tigers on the back of Jayden Nelson’s 3-for-3, 2 HR, 4 RBI effort.
But that 8-run gap to finish wasn’t even the most one-sided final score yesterday by a long shot. Indiana beat Boston College 13-3, with speedy Canadian second baseman Aurélien Delhaye, a junior, going 2-for-3 with a homer and a stolen base, along with a pair of walks. First baseman Ruben Rodriguez added a 3-run homer in the 8th. The Eagles put up a great defence on the infield grounders, with three double-plays in total, two of them executed by what is now known as the “T-K-O” – Turner-Kaufmann-Oyervides, for the 4-6-3 position players who executed them.
Michigan State undressed Ohio State in a 13-run win, finishing with 16 runs on 15 hits. The Buckeyes had 3 errors – as many as they had runs – though they also showed flashes of a promising defense with two great double-plays. Kevin Felton was named player of the game for the Spartans for his 3-for-5 outing, which included a 2-run homer in the 6th.
But the biggest one-sided victory went to Duke, who demolished Clemson 15-1. The North Carolina team tallied up 20 hits to the South Carolinians’ 3, and tapped 4 long balls totalling 7 runs, while the Tigers were unable to muster any extra bases. Blue Devilsfirst baseman Brian Stinson was on fire, going 3-for-4 with a pair of walks, and scoring 4 times.
Honorable mentions for lopsided wins yesterday also go to Florida State, who took down Notre Dame 11-4, and the Iowa Hawkeyes who doubled up on Miami 10-5.
It wasn’t just bats that were smoking hot in the Sunday opener, either. Two games were shutouts, both won by PAC-12 teams. UCLA shut down the Washington Huskies 3-0, as Bruins junior Tsuyoshi Yamada crafted 8.0 scoreless innings, allowing just 4 hits and 7 walks. And, Stanford froze our Kentucky 4-0, as the disorganized Wildcats essentially mailed it in.
Action continues in the NCAA with the second game of the opening series match-ups going later today.