Revenge proved sweet for Virginia as they beat Vanderbilt (who they lost to last year in the CWS) 4-2 to capture the 2015 College World Series title. For a team that was a long shot to get back to Omaha, Virginia never quit this year and are now standing on top of the world.
It was Vanderbilt, though, who struck first in the game when Dansby Swanson’s slow groundout knocked in Bryan Reynolds—who had previously hit a double—in the bottom of the first inning. Zander Wiel would then hit an RBI-double to knock in Rhett Wiseman to give the Commodores an early 2-0 advantage.
After that, it was all Virginia.
Freshman Pavin Smith got the Cavs back in the game with one swing of the bat, as his two-run home run tied it up at 2 in the top of the fourth inning.
Smith then stepped up again, as his single in the top of the fifth inning drove in Adam Haseley to give the Cavs the lead for good at 3-2. Kenny Towns hit an insurance RBI-single in the top of the seventh inning to put the Cavs up 4-2.
2015 NATIONAL CHAMPIONS!! pic.twitter.com/2CAiipXkYh
— NCAA Baseball (@NCAACWS) June 25, 2015
Brandon Waddell, who is now 5-0 in CWS starts, pitched a heck of a game for the Cavs. After struggling in the first, he would go on to pitch seven innings, allowing two runs on four hits and two walks while striking out two batters to earn the win (5-5).
He then gave way to stud pitcher Nathan Kirby.
Kirby, who was a first-round pick of the Brewers in the 2015 MLB draft, would cruise for two innings to get the save. He allowed zero runs on one hit and one walk, while striking out five of the six batters he got out.
Walker Buehler, a first-round pick of the Dodgers, just did not have it on this night for the Commodores, as he pitched just three innings while giving up two runs on three hits and four walks. It was John Kilichowski who took the loss for the Commodores though.
With so many injuries and playing a lot of freshmen, and then losing Game One, the odds always seemed stacked against the Cavs. But much credit goes to coach Brian O’Connor for keeping this team together. This was one heck of a coaching job by O’Connor.
Josh Sborz, who was critical in the Cavs winning Game Two, won the CWS Most Outstanding Player award.