Arizona Falls Short in 2016 College World Series

An incredible run that began with the Arizona Wildcats a two seed in the Louisiana-Lafayette regional a few weeks ago came to an end Thursday as the Wildcats fell to Coastal Carolina 4-3 in what was an intense series from start to finish.

The Wildcats would provide drama in the bottom of the ninth with a sack fly by Zach Gibbons who drove in Louis Boyd. Ryan Aguilar would then rip a double to deep left. Head Coach Jay Johnson held Cody Ramer at third instead of having a play at the plate at home. Ryan Huag would come up with runners on second and third with two outs but would strikeout to end the game.

Arizona had it’s first opportunity to score in the bottom of the third when Zach Gibbons grounded into fielder’s choice to pitcher, Cody Ramer broke for home and was thrown out at the plate in a very tough call made by the umpire. A run that could have gone a long way for the Cats in the game.

Coast Carolina struck first with a big top half of the sixth inning. Cody Ramer who had been phenomenal both offensively and defensively misplayed a routine ground ball to him with two outs in the inning which led to one run and a throwing error to third base allowed a second run to score. Then the next batter was G.K. Young who hit a two-run home run to right field.

Arizona would respond in the bottom half of the inning with a two run single off the at Jared Oliva. The score would hold at 4-2 until the fireworks of the ninth inning.

Coastal Carolina had their ace on the mound in Andrew Beckwith and the Wildcats gave him all he could handle. In the end, he was still rock solid going 5.2 innings giving up two unearned runs, six hits and struck out two. Bobby Dalbec in the final game of his Wildcat career stepped up as a leader for this team throwing 5.2 innings as well giving up four hits and four unearned runs while striking out eight.

The Wildcats had their chances but the wildcats left a lot of runners on base in each of the last two games of this series which would come back to haunt them. Arizona was an opportunistic team from the end of Pac-12 play through their run in Omaha but just could not get enough runners to cross the plate in the end despite the opportunities they had.

In the end, it wasn’t the result the Wildcats hoped for, but still a remarkable way to end year one under head coach Jay Johnson.

A born and bred Arizonan, Jared has had great passion for the hometown teams all his life. He now channel's that passion into covering the pro, college and high school teams around the state as a Multimedia Reporter for Sports360AZ.