The University of Virginia Cavaliers, after a strange and disappointing regular season, have advanced to the NCAA College World Series. Improbably. Unexpectedly. Unbelievably.
They swept the University of Maryland Terrapins in the Super Regionals with wins on Friday and Saturday.
And, I wasn’t ready for the dog pile.
Last year, I was.
See … here’s 2014 …
The UVa Cavaliers’ dog pile after defeating Maryland in the Super Regionals and advanced to the College World Series in 2014.
This year, once again parked in Section H of left field with all the other displaced season-ticket holders, I wasn’t ready.
You know that auto-focus “idiot button” on your camera? Not idiot proof.
But, really, can you blame me?
Maryland had just come off of a regional series where it knocked off UCLA, the number 1 team in the country. So, no slouch those Terps.
The Hoos took Game 1, beating Maryland on Friday night 5-3.
But, on Saturday, Maryland took a comfy 4-2 lead into the 9th.
All they had to do was breeze through the bottom of the 9th with the same ease they had breezed through every inning since the 1st. The Terps would tie up the series, leaving a deciding game on Sunday.
Then the “breezing” stopped. Lead off walk. Single. Walk. (Pitching Change). Walk. (Run Scores.)
It’s 4-3, no outs. But, to take my camera out at this point … to presume a miracle … is to jinx things. And, I’m no jinxer.
The Hoo’s #9 batter, scrappy freshman Ernie Clement – 1-for-6 over the two games – steps up.
And, this happened.
Ernie! (And, there’s your dog pile!)
Here’s the Game 1 Recap.
Here’s the Game 2 Recap.
The University of Virginia advances to the College World Series.
I finally got my camera out and focused.
Look … I’m on ESPN!
Is this how you take a selfie?
Congratulations, University of Virginia Cavaliers. Hoo’s going back to Omaha? You are!
Brandon Waddell, Game 2 starter, leads the post-game celebration.
That’s pitcher Connor Jones, winner of Game 1, surveying the Davenport Field celebration.
Ernie Clement’s batting helmet might still be out there.
The College World Series begins Saturday, June 13, 2015.
And that’s exactly the way it happened!
I think I’ve watched that video of Ernie Clement’s single about 20 times now. In fact, I think I’ll go watch it again now …
OMG!! What a great weekend for all the UVa fans,
Nothing makes sitting in the heat and humidity in the bleachers bearable like an amazing come-from-behind victory!
If they awarded six stars you should get seven.
Sent from my iPhone
I believe Ernie Clement deserves those extra stars! Go Hoos! :)
Now that you’re a big star with your picture on television and everything, will you still make room on your blog for us peons? :-)
Congrats on the win and the pix.
I believe I can now sign my posts … “The Baseball Bloggess, As Seen On ESPN” Well, fleetingly seen, anyway!
It was an awesome and amazing victory!!!
I agree! It was so exciting … and so unexpected. I still remember saying “goodbye” to all the season ticket folks in our section last month. Who knew we’d get one more chance to celebrate together! :)