The emotion from game one to game two could not have swung any differently.
While Monday’s LSU win saw the Tigers work through five solo home runs allowed for the extra innings win, Tuesday’s Texas win saw the Longhorns tap the Tigers for runs early and hold them silent from the hill until the end.
With one game remaining and an NCAA Championship on the line, what are the Tigers saying about Wednesday?
Jared Mitchell was 1-for-3 on the night, bringing in the lone Tiger run in the second inning by way of a Longhorn fielding error. Mitchell and Blake Dean were the only two LSU batters to draw walks on the night.
Shea: The team has only dropped back-to-back games once in 72 outings on the year. What does that say about the squads’ ability to bounce back after a tough outing?
Mitchell: We are a 2-of-3 team. We keep winning that way and we will be fine.
Shea: How does the team harness the same emotion that they had to bring into Tuesday night’s game?
Mitchell: Everyone finds that drive within … the thing that keeps that person going. Whatever it is, everyone on our team has been able to dig deep and find it when needed.
Shea: What is the first step to turning things around after a loss?
Mitchell: You have to put it behind you, bottom line. I have already put the loss behind me, and it has not been but a few minutes. If you play sports all your life and know the game of baseball, you realize that there is always another day. Fortunately for us, tomorrow is the last day.
Shea: With only one game on the docket, what does having Anthony Ranaudo (11-3, 2.87) on the hill do for the team’s confidence?
Mitchell: Having Anthony adds a little more to it. He has pitched great all season, and he is the competitor and gamer that we want out there for the final game.
Leon Landry, who has started 42 of the Tigers’ 72 games, got the call over Sean Ochinko on Tuesday night. The sophomore, who was making his first start at the CWS, was 1-for-4 with a pair of strikeouts.
Shea: How did you feel coming into the lineup for the first time in over a month (May 30 vs. Baylor)?
Landry: Coming off the bench after being platooned was a little rough, but I was happy to be out there. I did not hit well, but I felt in my heart that I gave it everything that I had.
Shea: The diving catch in left field looked like the typical Leon Landry. How was the crowd support behind you, which seemed at an all-time high after the grab?
Landry: (laughs) We have a lot of fun out in left field, I can say that. The fans really give all of us a ton of confidence, and we will need that again Wednesday. The LSU support has been like no other, so Wednesday we are going to go out and try to win this for the fans.
Mikie Mahtook, coming off Monday night’s game winning single, was 0-for-4 with a pair of strikeouts. The one through five batters for LSU were held to 4-of-19 hitting.
Shea: What was Taylor Jungmann’s secret?
Mahtook: He was just locating his fastball and throwing his slider down in the dirt, and a lot of pitches were tough to lay off of. He had some great stuff, and it definitely had us off balance.
Shea: How does the 2-of-3 series favor LSU headed into the final game of the year?
Mahtook: We have been down 1-1 in series all year and won the Sunday game. The third game happens to be on a Wednesday and not a Sunday, but we are going to go out and take it.