The Arizona Wildcats' dominant College World Series performance proved they not only deserved to play for the title but also that everyone who doubted them was selling them short.
They really showed the critics who deserved to be called champions with a 5-1 win on Sunday and a 4-1 win on Monday.
I must admit, I was one of those critics.
I was swayed by the Gamecocks' solid pitching, all the while discrediting the Wildcats’ pitching staff and their bats.
In Monday’s clincher, the Wildcats went through perhaps the mightiest of the Gamecocks’ ballyhooed arms. They notched a third-inning run off ace Michael Roth, and in the ninth they put a three-spot on the board against the Gamecocks’ closer, Matt Price.
In the end, as much as South Carolina’s pitching staff didn’t shut the Wildcats down, the story was how the Arizona staff put the clamps on the Gamecocks' bats.
Arizona outscored South Carolina 9-2 in the two games. You aren’t going to win many two-game stretches where you average a-run-per-game.
The lack of run support put tremendous pressure on the Gamecocks’ arms to literally shut the Wildcats out. Arizona proved that just wasn’t going to happen.
The Wildcats’ depth was apparent throughout. The PAC-12 Player of the Year, Alex Mejia, was just 2-for-9 in the two games, but the rest of the Wildcats’ bats carried the offensive load.
Robert Refsnyder was voted the series Most Outstanding Player and deservedly so. He was 4-for-6 in the series with two big RBI in Monday’s game.
The Wildcats are the champs, and they deserve their due.
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