Heartbreak for Dawgs in 6-1 defeat

OMAHA, NE – Despite its best efforts, Georgia was unable to overcome a performance from two Fresno State Bulldogs that was truly wondrous.

Behind the hitting of Steve Detwiler and pitching of Justin Wilson (9-5), the Bulldogs of Fresno State University (47-31) powered their to their first men's national title in school history with a 6-1 victory over Georgia (45-25-1).

"True champion. They did it the hard way. Five games in five days. They did a great job," said Georgia head coach David Perno about his opponent.

Detwiler had a day that few would even dare dream of because it would seem too far-fetched. Going 4-for-4 at the plate, he blasted two home runs, a double, and a single to total six RBI - accounting for all of his team's runs.

"That's equally frustrating, when it's one guy," said Perno. "The third time when he hit the three-run homer off of Dean, he just fell behind. 3-1 (count) and (he) left a fastball right over the plate. We probably should have done something different. It was just a tough situation. It was unfortunate that he came up in the situations that he did."

When asked about his performance at the plate, Detwiler did nothing but praise his teammates for their efforts all night, only finally saying "just got lucky and capitalized on a few of them."

His teammates would not accept the selfless answer.

"Yeah dude, we only scored six and you knocked all of them in," pointed out Fresno closer Brandon Burke.

His starting pitcher was appreciative as well.

"He's giving a lot of credit away from himself, but he had a great night," Wilson said.

But if he had struck out every at-bat after his first home run, that would have been enough for the national title because of the efforts of Fresno's starter.

Starting on just three days rest after a 112-pitch performance against North Carolina on June 21st, Wilson's coach had said prior to the game he only expected about 4 innings out of his starter.

Mark that down as one prediction that Fresno skipper Mike Batesole won't mind being wrong about.

"It was over when I saw the look in his eye in the first inning. There was no doubt in my mind it was over," Batesole said about his prediction.

Wilson said he was only hoping to give his team a chance during the game. It'd be easy to say he surpassed his own expectations.

"I just wanted to get on the mound and throw a lot of strikes for the team. They're great hitters. Look at Beckham. You throw that guy any pitch, and he can hit it anywhere," Wilson said.

Pointing out Beckham was an appropriate choice for Wilson, as he accounted for two of Georgia's five hits against him, including Georgia's only run in the game from a solo shot in the 8th inning. For the game Wilson threw 129 pitches, struck out nine and only issued one walk

"I think he just kept the ball down. He worked both sides of the plate. Changed speeds on us. It just seemed like he had our number tonight. He was sharp as tack and you've got to tip your hat to him. He came ready," said Georgia third baseman Ryan Peisel.

In the 9th it looked as if Georgia might make the game a bit more interesting, as it had been prone to do throughout the postseason, putting runners on first and second with no outs. But pinch hitter David Thoms hit into a double play that put an end to most of those thoughts, making the only real drama about who would make the final out.

And the out was made, of course, by Detwiler, allowing him to end Georgia's hopes and begin Fresno's celebration.


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