It was an especially outstanding outing from Holder considering that in the third inning he took a line drive off the shin that made his ability to finish the 3rd questionable, much less 7 strong innings.
"He laid it out there tonight. To take that shot off his shin early in the game," Perno said. "It was good on our bullpen. Now we should be fresh."
For the game Holder allowed 4 hits, 3 earned runs, 3 walks with 4 strikeouts. He threw 106 pitches, 64 of which were strikes.
MONTGOMERY'S TIME TO SHINE: With game 1 in the books, the chance to win the school's second national title falls to veteran right-hander Nick Montgomery.
Montgomery, who since starting in a victory against Georgia Tech at Turner Field has been a reliable big-game starter for the Dawgs, has endured a career filled with ups and downs from his time at Young Harris until now. But he knows that he now has an opportunity that very few are ever presented with.
"I think it's the best feeling in the world. I don't think you could ask for a better way to go out or end a career or anything. It's just a dream come true," Montgomery said about having the chance to pitch for a national title.
As for what's changed with his pitching that's propelled him to such success as a starter?
"I guess it's just confidence. People behind you have more confidence and you can tell that they do. I think it kind of built up to the one at regional (complete game shutout against Tech). The first one (win at Turner) felt good, and so I got comfortable out there," he said.
With much of the bullpen still relatively fresh, namely Dean Weaver and Stephen Dodson, Montgomery won't have to go as far tomorrow night, but his ability to do so would likely be a good barometer of Georgia's success in that game. To accomplish that feat, Montgomery said, it's necessary to just have faith in the teammates behind you.
"I think you just throw more strikes and get it to the defense more. Don't go for the strikeouts as much. Just let them play their game behind you," he said.
REDEMPTION SPELLED M-A-T-T: One game removed from going hitless at the plate while striking out five times, Matt Cerione more than made up for his ineffective play against Stanford.
His RBI in the 6th came with two outs, and his double in the 8th brought in Rich Poythress to tie the game.
"I think that's when your character is revealed," Perno said about Cerione's ability to turn in such a performance when things weren't going well for him.
UNLIKELY SPEED Two of the runs Georgia scored prior to its 8th inning rally were almost mere outs as less fleet-footed players Bryce Massanari and Rich Poythress scored on bang-bang plays at home plate.
"Those were big runs. Hustle on the base paths. You got to do those types of things in the national championship series," Perno said. "It doesn't surprise me."
The attendance at tonight's game was 19,559, bringing the total attendance at the CWS to 285,499. A crowd of 15,203 or more tomorrow night will break the old CWS record for total attendance which was set in 2007...Gordon Beckham's home run was his 27th home run of the season and 52nd of his career, which breaks the tie he had with Josh Morris for Georgia's career record. Beckham is now one shy of Matt Clark of LSU for the individual NCAA home run lead this season...Joshua Fields' save was his 18th of the season...Will Harvil (2-1) ended up getting the win for Georgia.