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National Champs:LSU wins their seventh CWS



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Story from LSU Athletics:
OMAHA, Neb. — LSU returned to the pinnacle of college baseball on Monday, defeating SEC rival Florida, 18-4, to win its seventh national championship and the 2023 College World Series.

Led by second-year head coach Jay Johnson – who became the first coach to win a title prior to his third season at an institution – LSU (54-16) overcame a 2-0 first-inning deficit by scoring six in the second and four in the fourth inning to take a commanding 10-2 lead.

LSU start Thatcher Hurd (8-3) earned his second win in the series, throwing six innings and allowing only two runs on two hits – the first two batters he faced – while striking out seven.

Offensively, the Tigers amassed 24 hits, the program’s most hits in a CWS game. Eleven Tigers recorded at least one hit in the contest.

The Tigers captured five national titles (1991, 1993, 1996, 1997 and 2000) under legendary head coach Skip Bertman, and added a sixth when third-year head coach Paul Mainieri won the championship series in 2009 over Texas.

After a 3-2 loss to No. 1 seed Wake Forest last Monday, Johnson’s Tigers came through the loser’s bracket by eliminating Tennessee before earning consecutive win over the Demon Deacons to setup a best-of-three championship series against No. 2-seeded Florida. LSU won game 1 of the series, 4-3 in 11 innings, before Florida drew even with a 24-4 victory Sunday.

Florida’s center fielder Wyatt Langford opened the scoring in the championship game with a two-run homer in the bottom of the first. LSU responded in the top half of the second, striking for six runs.

The busy rally started with a walk by second baseman Gavin Dugas, who reached second base on a wild pitch and scored on a single by shortstop Jordan Thompson. The Tigers loaded the bases following a fielder’s choice and walk by catcher Alex Milazzo. Designated hitter Cade Beloso wore his second pitch of the game and LSU tied it at two.

Golden Spikes Award winning enterfielder Dylan Crewsgave the Tigers a 3-2 lead after coaxing a walk. LSU scored three more times on the strength of two RBI singles from third baseman Tommy White and Dugas with first baseman Tre’ Morgan lifting a ball to the outfield for a sac fly. The Tigers led 6-2 after two innings.

The offensive onslaught continued in the fourth inning, anchored by left fielder Josh Pearson’s two-run bomb. The frame featured Thompson’s second hit and RBI of the game and a Beloso RBI single that allowed Milazzo to score from first base. It made the score 10-2.

LSU tacked on its 11th run in the seventh inning with a bases-loaded walk from Hayden Travinski. Florida rightfielder Ty Evans launched his ninth home run of the season and his fifth of the College World Series. Cooper escaped the inning with LSU leading 11-3.

In the top of the eighth, the Tigers struck for three runs to make it 14-3. UF’s Cade Kurland hit his 17th homer in the bottom half to make if 14-4.

The Tigers again answered the Gators’ score with more runs in the top of the ninth, as Crews singled before White and Morgan hit RBI doubles. Brayden Jobert then capped his 4-for-7 performance with a two-run home run for an 18-4 LSU advantage.

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