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Georgia pounds Stanford to reach CWS final.


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Georgia pounds Stanford to reach CWS final

By STAN AWTREY

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Published on: 06/21/08

Omaha, Neb. For four days the Georgia baseball team has cast about town, trying to find a way to kill time. There were picnics, endless video games and visits to the local Boys Club.

Now the Bulldogs will have to mine their imaginations again today for another diversion, but this time they don't mind. This time they'll be resting up to play for the national championship for the first time since 1990.

Georgia remained undefeated in the College World Series on Saturday, beating Stanford 10-8 at Rosenblatt Stadium, and is scheduled to play either Fresno State or North Carolina in a best-of-three series that begins at 7 p.m. ET on Monday.

"We came here to play, and now we're in the national championship game, and you couldn't ask for more," said shortstop Gordon Beckham. "All we wanted to do was be playing on the last day."

Georgia (44-23-1) overpowered the Cardinal the first time in this year's CWS that the Dogs have played with the lead with 15 hits, the second-most in the school's CWS history. The only bad stretch came in the ninth inning, when Stanford (41-24-2) caused a few pulse rates to increase when it scored four runs against closer Joshua Fields.

"Georgia was too much for us today," said Stanford coach Mark Marquess. "Everybody was getting the big hit for them time and time again. Not only did they get a lot of hits, they got a lot of hits with two outs."

The first clutch hit, which set the pace for the game, came when Joey Lewis drove in Rich Poythress with a two-out single in the second. Lewis did it again in the third, this time driving in two with a two-out single.

They were pretty good in one-out situations, too. Poythress greeted new pitcher Drew Storen with a two-run single in the fourth and Ryan Peisel hit a towering three-run homer in the fifth.

"We battled all day," Peisel said. "It took us a few innings to settle in, but we played our game and sort of outplayed them today."

Poythress finished with four RBIs, and Peisel and Lewis each drove in three.

Georgia staked starter Nathan Moreau, making his first appearance since the Super Regional against N.C. State, to a 4-0 lead in the third. But when the junior loaded the bases in the bottom of the inning, coach David Perno went for the quick hook, bringing in Dean Weaver, who permitted only one of the inherited runners to score.

Weaver (6-1) got the win after pitching 3 2/3 innings, which saw him give up six hits and three runs. Lefty Alex McCree followed with two scoreless innings. Fields, the team's closer, struggled with location and allowed a season-high four runs.

"The bullpen was phenomenal in the middle innings," Perno said.

The pitchers were able to shut down Stanford slugger Jason Castro, who went 1-for-5 with two strikeouts. He struck out in the third with the bases loaded, his only at-bat with runners in scoring position.

"They did a great job pitching," Castro said. "They were going inside-outside and mixing speeds. They came up with the big pitches when they needed to. They made it hard on our hitters."

Georgia knocked out Stanford starter Jeremy Bleich (3-3) with one out in the fourth, then touched Storen, the best Cardinal reliever, for three runs.

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Too bad Fields stunk-giving up a ton of runs when it was over for the most part is inexcusable even w/ that lead.  Leading 10-4 in 9th w/ him in there-should've been the finale.  I agree w/ the announcers-looks like he's trying to do too much/overthrow/etc.

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crumplin (6/22/2008)
10-8 is not a pounding. Beating a team by 7 and up is.

actually scoring 10 runs is a pounding.. it's obvious you didn't even watch the game, but look at the score and make an opinion from it (or you are a gator fan and thus aren't watching any baseball now anyways). If you saw the game it was a pounding.. it was 10-4 in the 9th inning.. uga pounded out 15 hits. totally outplayed them and dominated the game.

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crumplin (6/22/2008)
I am a gator fan and did not know how the game went down. The only game of UGA I have watch was when they played Miami. By the way how is Lyle Allen playing so far. I went to school with him and I can't keep up with the games.

Lyle Allen had a HUGE HUGE defensive play. He saved at least 2 runs with a great catch of a line drive to the warning track on saturday against Stanford. He also had a 14 pitch at bat in UGA's first game against Stanford. It was a big at bat. I believe it ended up in a single. he is doing great. Great guy to have on the team. Hey if you have a chance UGA is play Fresno State in the best of 3 series starting tomorrow night at 7pm on ESPN. I know it's UGA, but it's going to be some great baseball.

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I'm no UGA fan, but I wouldn't mind seeing them take the CWS championship.  They've got a good team all-around.  Beckham really is a great player, and more than deserving of his high draft selection.  I'm disappointed that Josh Fields won't be with the Braves, but the Mariners DEFINITELY will need him in the future.

The state of Georgia is really becoming a powerhouse for baseball.  The talent in this state is ridiculous.  I wouldn't mind seeing UGA win the CWS and another team from GA taking the LLWS for what would be the 3rd straight year.  ;)

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