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Valley / Ventura County Sports | COLLEGE BASEBALL ROUNDUP

Master's Slips Into NAIA World Series

May 21, 2000|JOHN GARDNER | From Staff Reports

CALDWELL, Idaho — Lady Luck smiled on The Master's College on Saturday.

At about the same time the Mustangs were forced to a decisive third game in the NAIA Sectional I/II series with Albertson, Dallas Baptist was completing its championship run of Sectional III down south. The significance of that 11-inning victory was that The Master's received an at-large berth into the NAIA World Series next week.

With that out of the way, at stake against Albertson was a first-round bye in the World Series. Albertson wound up with that honor by winning the second game, 7-4.

Albertson (48-12) forced the third game with a 5-1 victory earlier in the day.

The Master's (35-13), will play Birmingham Southern in the first round of the World Series on Friday in Lewiston, Idaho.

"What a thrill," Coach Monte Brooks said of the Mustangs' first World Series berth. "The stakes were high this weekend, making for some very intense, exciting games.

"To be able to compete with a team like Albertson is a tribute to the kids' talents."

In the first game, Albertson returned the favor from the day before by breaking out to a 4-0 lead after three innings. The Coyotes connected for nine hits off Mike Ploharz (11-1).

Baserunning blunders and errors were devastating for The Master's. The Mustangs committed three errors, but even more glaring were the mental breakdowns on the basepaths.

The Master's trailed, 4-0, in the fifth but put two runners on before David Keesee was caught in a rundown between first and second. Ploharz scored from third but Keesee was tagged out at second after failing to slide.

In the eighth, Erik Jones overran second base on a single by Luke Kollmann and was thrown out by the left fielder.

The Master's battled back for a 4-4 tie in the sixth inning of the second game before Albertson scored three runs in the final two innings.

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