OMAHA, Neb. — Texas Tech’s first appearance in the College World Series was a short one.
After scratching out a run to tie it in the top of the ninth inning, Mississippi scored in the bottom half to hand the Red Raiders a 2-1 loss that sends them back to Lubbock, Texas, after two games here.
“We line up to play and we want to win,” Tech coach Tim Tadlock said, “so right now it’s kind of an unusual feeling for me because we did do something these guys will hold forever. At the same time, we’re going to lay our head down every night and wake up every morning trying to get back.”
The Red Raiders (45-20) batted just .223 at TD Ameritrade Park, and three of the five runs they allowed were unearned.
Ole Miss (47-20) won on John Gatlin’s pinch single into short right field over a pulled-in, five-man infield. The exciting finish came after Texas Tech had tied it in the top of the ninth on a couple daring steals and a sacrifice fly.
“When the game is on the line like that, we’re each called upon in different situations and every one of us feels prepared for it and expects to get the job done,” Gatlin said. “That just goes back to the toughness we’ve been preaching all year.”
Ole Miss (47-20) plays TCU or Virginia on Thursday in another elimination game.
“In this ballpark everything just seems amplified — every pitch, every error, every walk, every base hit. You can feel it in this stadium because runs are such a premium here. To pull one out, to get the win column here in Omaha for the first time since 1969 is huge.”
Ole Miss won after Colby Bortles walked with one out. Brantley Bell hit a comebacker to Cameron Smith, who tried to force out Bortles at second. But he threw high into center field, allowing Bortles to go to third.