The Florida Gators opened the 2017 College World Series final with a bang on Monday night, as they defeated the LSU Tigers, 4-3.
Each team recorded a scoreless first three frames before Florida was able to break through, tagging LSU starter Russell Reynolds for three runs on just one fourth inning hit. After Reynolds walked three straight Gators, he was pulled in favor of Nick Bush. Bush allowed a sacrifice fly and a two-run double before getting out of the inning.
The Gators hung on to their 3-0 lead until the bottom of the sixth inning, when Antoine Duplantis cranked a solo shot to right to get LSU on the board. After Greg Diechmann struck out for the second out of the inning, Zach Watson was hit by a pitch and Josh Smith walked, setting the stage for Beau Jordan to have a chance to put the Tigers on top. He was unable to, however, he singled home Watson for LSU’s second run. That would be all they got in the sixth, though, as Florida starter Brady Singer worked out of the jam.
The Gators added a run in the seventh, when Mike Rivera brought home Austin Langworthy with a single to double the lead to 4-2.
LSU made it interesting, though. Deichmann led off the bottom of the eighth with a double, and Smith drove him in to get the Tigers within one, but that was all LSU could muster off Michael Byrne, who also pitched a 1-2-3 ninth inning.
Game two will take place Tuesday night at 8 p.m. ET.