Tulane players do a victory lap around the stadium after defeating Alabama 7-4 in the New Orleans Regional of the NCAA college baseball tournament Monday June 6, 2005. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)
June 7, 2005
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Micah Owings, who had a double and two home runs in Tulane's first two games in the New Orleans NCAA regional, took the pitching mound Monday night and allowed four runs and struck out six as the Green Wave beat Alabama 7-4.
Tulane (53-9), the top seed nationally, advanced to the super regional round after going undefeated in the regional and will face Rice for a spot in the College World Series.
Alabama (40-23) had lost to Tulane earlier in the regional. The Crimson Tide beat Louisiana-Lafayette in the losing bracket on Sunday to reach the championship round.
The game was originally scheduled for Sunday night, but rain - an estimated three inches - moved it to 1 p.m. Monday, then 3 p.m. It finally got under way at 7 p.m.
The infield, which was covered with a tarp throughout the storms, was in good shape. The outfield was waterlogged. Crews with blowers and squeegees worked ti throughout the afternoon. A helicopter was brought in and hovered over the outfield for over an hour. Its blades acted as a giant fan, helping to dry the soggy ground.
Still outfielders kicked up water with every move during the game, balls splashed maddeningly and players slipped and fell as they tried to grab them.
Then, in the bottom of the seventh, lightening delayed the game for an hour.
Tulane, which came into Sunday's game hitting .374 in the postseason, got the bats working early.
The Green Wave loaded the bases in the bottom of the second. Nathan Southard singled and took second on a wild pitch. Tommy Manzella's single sent Southard to third, then Manzella stole second. With first open, Alabama intentionally walked Owings, who was the designated hitter as well as the pitcher.
A sacrifice fly by Brian Bogusevic scored Southard. Mark Hamilton doubled to drive in Manzella, putting the Green Wave up 2-1.
Zac Welch, who singled in Alabama's first inning run, singled in two more runs in the third to put the Tide ahead 3-2.
The Greenies stretched their lead in the bottom of the third, loading the bases on three straight singles. Hamilton drove in a run, and Greg Dini doubled in two more to make it 5-3 Tulane.
In the fifth Welch came through for Alabama again with an RBI double that made it 5-4.
Dini put the game away for Tulane in the seventh, pounding a two-run homer to left to make it 7-4.
Owings (10-4) was the winning pitcher. Trey Shields (1-1) took the loss.