23 May 2013

Great 1st day in the books at WAC tourney

Whenever I get the chance to attend a baseball game, I'm reminded of how much I love the sport and most of what goes on around it. I have a particular affinity for the college game, having been deeply involved in it as a college student, and Wednesday's opening day of the WAC Tournament in Grand Prairie, Texas, was a reminder of plenty of the great things about college baseball.

Of primary importance, of course, were the games. All three were competitive, two very close, and one - the opener - provided a lasting memory. UTSA and Sacramento State battled into 14 innings with great pitching and one dramatic double play before R.J. Perucki led off the bottom of the 14th with a no-doubt, walk-off home run to deep left field. My call may not have been an epic one, but given that it was my first baseball game in two years, I felt OK about the result -- check it out here courtesy of UTSA's Soundcloud account.

The middle game had some of that college spirit, as the very vocal San Jose State dugout made up for a slight lack of crowd noise, with both SJSU and CSU Bakersfield understandably bringing very few fans to Texas. Nothing like a little bench jockeying to provide some atmosphere!

The nightcap featured the two co-hosts, UT-Arlington and Dallas Baptist, and had by far the best atmosphere of the games. I could let the game breathe for 10-15 seconds at a time, and the ambient noise in the stadium sounded like a baseball game anywhere in the country. It was a tense one, too, with UT-Arlington starter Brad Vachon recovering from a rough 2nd inning to pitch into the 8th inning, allowing only two hits and striking out 11. An amazing performance, considering there were relievers throwing in the bullpen almost every inning.

One day in the books and four more to go here in Grand Prairie - let's hope the whole tournament is this much fun!

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