OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Tyler Campbell’s bases-loaded infield single in the bottom of the 10th inning gave Vanderbilt a 4-3 win over Texas on Saturday night and sent the Commodores to the College World Series finals against Virginia.
Campbell was in his second game filling in for third baseman Xavier Turner, who was ruled ineligible Friday for a violation of NCAA rules. Campbell had only 21 at-bats this season when he stepped to the plate in the 10th. He sent a slow grounder toward shortstop C.J. Hinojosa, who charged the ball, but couldn’t get it to first in time to get Campbell.
Freshman Hayden Stone (3-0) struck out eight in 5 2-3 innings of relief of Carson Fulmer. Vanderbilt (49-20) gives the SEC a team in the CWS finals for the seventh straight year.
John Curtiss (2-3) took the loss for Texas (46-21).
Vanderbilt survived a couple of scares to advance to the best-of-three CWS championship series, which begins Monday night.
In the fifth inning, Fulmer issued three straight walks to load the bases with one out. Stone came on and Ben Johnson hit into an inning-ending double play on his first pitch.
In the Texas 10th, Hinojosa drilled a ball deep to right, but Rhett Wiseman sprinted into the right-center field gap and extended his glove to make the catch before falling onto the warning track.
Curtiss got Zander Wiel to ground out and John Norwood to fly out to start the bottom half. Wiseman followed with a single, pinch-hitter Ro Coleman walked and Karl Ellison was hit above the left elbow by a 91-mph fastball to load the bases for Campbell.
Campbell fouled off a pitch and took another before he grounded to short. When he beat Hinojosa’s throw, he waited to be mobbed by teammates who came flooding out of the dugout and bullpen.
Texas had tied it at 3 in the sixth when Tres Barrera drove the ball over Norwood in center field and scored on Zane Gurwitz’s single.
Wiseman doubled off the right-field fence to give Vanderbilt a 3-2 lead in the fifth. The Commodores lost a chance to add to the lead when Nolan Rogers tried to squeeze bunt with two strikes. He struck out, and Norwood got caught in a rundown between third and home. Wiseman, running to third on the play, was called out after he and Norwood ended up standing together on the bag, with catcher Karl Ellison tagging both.
Vanderbilt scored once in the first — ending Texas pitchers’ 19-inning scoreless streak — and capitalized on a couple of errors to go up 2-0 in the third.
Texas tied it at 2 against Fulmer in the fourth after loading the bases with no outs. Kacy Clemens, a .211 hitter who came to bat 1 for 14 in the CWS, drove in Hinojosa and Collin Shaw with a single up the middle. Kacy’s famous father, seven-time Cy Young Award winner Roger Clemens, pointed to his son on first base and high-fived people in his suite at TD Ameritrade Park.
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