Dropping the opener 6-3 on Wednesday, the Blue team was looking for a quick start against Orange starter Sean Ray and they got just that as a one-out walk to freshman Kevin Patterson started a rally. Up next, freshman Chezz McCann punt down a perfect bunt towards first base that Ray picked up, but couldn't outrun him to the bag. That set the stage for outfielder Bradley Ray, who singled to left to load the bases for Luke Greinke.
Luke Greinke goes down to get a pitch during Thursday's game.
A more physical hitter following his successful summer that saw him named as the Baseball America Summer Player of the Year, Greinke got a pitch to drive and lifted it deep to left field. The ball banged off the green monster, allowing all three runs to score. Greinke coasted in to second base with a double and a 3-0 Orange lead.
Pitching a scoreless first three innings, Orange starter Taylor Thompson finally got touched up in the top of the fourth as freshman outfielder Trent Mummey drilled a triple to right field to set the table for redshirt freshman infielder David Cunningham. The Georgia native delivered as his single to right easily scored Mummey to put the Blue team on the board.
Freshman Trent Mummey continued his strong fall with a triple in Thursday's game.
The lead would remain 3-1 until Greinke again came through. This time his single to the left side started off the fifth. Freshman pitcher Jon Luke Jacobs came on in relief for Ray and got freshman Brian Fletcher to hit a slow ground ball to second for the out. Greinke advanced to second though and Joseph Sanders came through with a sharp double to left to score him. Leading 4-1 after five, the Orange team looked to be cruising, but the Blue team would make a run.
With Grant Dayton on in relief, Mummey led off the sixth with a walk. After moving to second on a ground ball from Cunningham, Mummey moved to third on an infield single by Mike Bianucci. A double steal called by Coach Paul Burnside worked as Bianuicci got caught in a run down that allowed Mummey to score from third to cut the lead to just two.
The Blue team would cut into things even more in the seventh as Ryan Jenkins started things with a single to left field. Freshman Wes Gilmer then walked to bring junior outfielder Ben Jones to the plate. Looking to catch the defense off guard, Burnside called for a bunt, but Dayton got off the mound to throw Jones out at first for out number two. With runners on second and third, freshman Justin Hargett drilled a single to right field to score Jenkins and cut the lead down to 4-3. With a runner on third Mummey lifted a liner into center field that looked like it would tie the game, but a diving grab by Fletcher kept the Orange team in the lead.
With their lead down to one, the Orange team put the final nail in the coffin of their competitors on Thursday in the bottom of the seventh. With two outs and nobody on facing freshman Miles Morton, Sanders ripped a double just inside the third base bag. Up next, Dustin Spruill drilled a double over Bianucci in right field to score Sanders and make the lead two once again. Bryan Woodall pitched a scoreless eighth and ninth inning to earn the save and even the series.
The team will play the final game of the world series Friday night at 7 p.m. following the Fourth Annual Home Run Derby that will take place beginning at 6 p.m. at Plainsman Park.