The Omaha woes continue for Louisville baseball in 2019. Two home runs by Vanderbilt’s Austin Martin would be enough for the #2 Commodores (55-11) to pull out a 3-1 win over #7 Louisville (49-17).
It would be a low scoring game for both teams, who came into their first games of the College World Series with some hot momentum carried over from the Super Regional. Louisville had scored 26 runs against East Carolina in their two-game sweep; Vanderbilt had a no-hitter in one game, and 13 runs in another to take the series from Duke last week.
Today, it would be Vanderbilt who got just enough to leave with a win. Austin Martin took the first pitch for a home run off Louisville’s Reid Detmers to give the Vandy boys a 1-0 lead in the first. The leadoff homer was the first by any player in the College World Series since 2015.
After Julian Infante set Martin up with a one-out double in the seventh inning, Martin would drill his second home run of the game. It marked back-to-back games that Martin had at least two home runs this postseason, having drilled two against Duke in the series clincher last Sunday.
For Louisville, their loss would be defined by missed opportunities on offense. The Cardinals scored their only run on a Henry Davis RBI single in the fifth inning, but they left the bases loaded with back-to-back outs to close the inning. Louisville ended up leaving ten men on base for the entire game, outhitting the Commodores 8-5.
U of L did have a chance in the ninth inning to tie the game, after a pinch-hitting Zach Britton reached base on a two-out single. That brought the tying run (Logan Wyatt) to the plate, but a flyout closed the game.
Vanderbilt was powered by Austin Martin, who entered the game averaging over .400 at the plate for the season. Martin hit two homers on his 2-for-4 showing today, accounting for all three of Vanderbilt’s RBIs. Julian Infante (1-for-3) hit his ninth double of the season. Starting pitcher Drake Fellows improved his record to an impressive 13-1 on the season, pitching seven innings and allowing just one earned run on seven hits.
U of L tallied eight hits in the game, getting two from Henry Davis (2-for-4) with the team’s lone RBI. Logan Wyatt went 1-for-4 and drew a walk, his 69th of the season and tying the single-season school record in the process. Justin Lavey went 1-for-4 with his ninth double of the season. Reid Detmers allowed just one earned run on three hits, but had an uncharacteristic performance as he walked a season-high six batters and struck out five, the lowest strikeout total for him since the season opener against Connecticut.
Louisville now heads to the elimination bracket, needing to win four straight games from Tuesday to Saturday to advance to the College World Series finals. The Cards begin that journey with a 2 p.m. elimination game against the loser of the Mississippi State v. Auburn game on Tuesday.