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College World Series Preview Capsules
A capsule look at the eight teams competing in the College World Series, which starts Saturday at TD Ameritrade Park Omaha in Omaha, Neb. (Coaches’ records at current schools through super regionals):
CWS Seed: 1.
Coach: Brian O’Connor (370-128-1, eighth season).
Road To Omaha: Won Charlottesville Regional: beat Navy 6-0, beat St. John’s 10-2, beat East Carolina 13-1. Won Charlottesville Super Regional: beat UC Irvine 6-0, lost to UC Irvine 6-4, beat UC Irvine 3-2.
2011 record vs. CWS teams: 1-3 (vs. North Carolina).
Last CWS appearance: 2009.
All-time record in CWS: 1-2 (second appearance).
Meet The Cavaliers: C John Hicks (.340, 7, 57), 1B Jared King (.333, 2, 28), 2B Keith Werman (.210, 0, 29), SS Chris Taylor (.310, 2, 48), 3B Steven Proscia (.335, 8, 58), LF John Barr (.283, 0, 33), CF Kenny Swab (.314, 1, 29), RF David Coleman (.366, 2, 39), DH Danny Hultzen (.320, 1, 35). Starting Pitchers: LHP Danny Hultzen (12-3, 1.49), RHP Will Roberts (11-1, 1.58), RHP Tyler Wilson (8-0, 2.29), RHP Cody Winiarski (6-3, 3.04). Relievers: RHP Branden Kline (4-10, 2.15, 17 saves), LHP Kyle Crockett (3-0, 1.73), RHP Corey Hunt (1-0, 2.81), RHP Whit Mayberry (5-0, 3.03, 1 save), RHP Justin Thompson (3-1, 3.35), LHP Scott Silverstein (1-0, 3.86).
All-Star Alumni: Eppa Rixey, Ryan Zimmerman, Mark Reynolds, Brian Buchanan, Mike Cubbage, Hank Foiles, Seth Greisinger, Ricky Horton.
Short Hops: Cavaliers, who set school record for wins, trying to become only second No. 1 overall seed to win CWS since NCAA expanded to current tournament format in 1999 _ when top-seeded Miami won it all. … Trying to become first ACC team (along with North Carolina) to win CWS since Wake Forest in 1955. … Made it to Omaha after pulling off ninth-inning comeback with two outs and trailing by run in super regional championship vs. UC Irvine. … Of Virginia’s 13 runs scored in super regionals vs. UC Irvine, eight came with two outs. Cavaliers have also scored 33 of 42 runs in NCAA tournament with two outs. … O’Connor is a former Creighton pitcher whose likeness is carved on “Road To Omaha” statue that stood in front of Rosenblatt Stadium for years and is now at CWS’ new home at TD Ameritrade Park Omaha. … Hultzen was first player to be named ACC pitcher of year twice in career, and was No. 2 overall draft pick by Mariners. … Roberts tossed first perfect game in school history in March, striking out 10 in win over George Washington. It was also eighth NCAA Division I nine-inning perfect game since 1957. Roberts also threw Cavaliers’ first NCAA tournament shutout in win over Navy. … Proscia is school’s career RBIs leader.
Quotable: “I’m speechless right now. This is a dream come true. A player can only dream of a moment like this.” _ Taylor, who had the winning two-out, two-run single in the bottom of the ninth against UC Irvine that lifted Cavaliers into CWS.
CWS Seed: 2.
By Mangosuthu Buthelezi
Memories of a long brotherhood tempered in common struggle
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