Austin Nola and Raph Rhymes went a combined 1-for-23 at the plate in the Super Regional series three games. The only hit between the two was Rhymes’ RBI-single in the sixth inning of Game 2. Rhymes saw his nation’s best batting average drop to .431 after entering the weekend hitting .452
For Nola, the disappointing series served as a somber end to his LSU career.
“We left everything out on the field, and we have no regrets about this year,” Nola said. “I enjoyed every bit of it, and it’s going to be hard to swallow for a few days. We just have to fight through it right now.”
LSU made its fair share of solid contact Sunday, but Stony Brook outfielders ran down just about everything that came their way.
The Tigers popped out to the outfield 12 times Sunday, including a catch against the wall by Travis Jankowski in the ninth inning. Mason Katz credited his opponents’ range for that high number.
“Their defense was phenomenal,” Katz said. “It felt like they were playing with five outfielders. Jankowski covered both gaps like it was nothing… Anything above 20 feet, he’s running down and catching it.”
Alex Box Stadium has often been called the “Cathedral of College Baseball.”
Stony Brook coach Matt Senk said it lived up that moniker as LSU fans packed the house for all three games. Fans set an Alex Box Stadium record with an actual attendance Sunday of 10,620 people. The paid attendance of 11,207 set a LSU postseason record.
“I only have one thing to say, they are some of the best fans around,” said Stony Brook pitcher Frankie Vanderka. “We got to pay our respects to them. They made this time a great experience for us.”
Around the horn
Stony Brook will make its first trip to the College World Series and play No. 2 national seed UCLA on Friday. They are the second No. 4 seed to reach Omaha since the Super Regional era began in 1999. Fresno State (2008) was the other and won the national championship that season. … Sunday marked the first time LSU has lost a Super Regional series at home after winning the first five played in Baton Rouge. … Stony Brook outscored LSU 14-8 in the Super Regional and outhit the Tigers 35-15.