The California Golden Bears pulled off a monstrous comeback against the Baylor Bears Monday night to advance to the 2011 NCAA baseball tournament super regionals. Cal trailed 6-1 after four innings and 8-5 in the ninth inning but rallied with four runs in the bottom of the ninth to shock the Baylor Bears. Cal advances to the super regionals where they will face fellow three seed Dallas Baptist for the right to play in the 2011 College World Series.
Cal grabbed the first run of the game in the first inning on a Marcus Semien two out double that drove in Tony Renda. However, Baylor took control of the game in the fourth inning as they put up a six spot courtesy of a lot of help from Cal. Baylor drew three walks and Cal had an error that resulted in two unearned runs. Baylor added a run in the sixth to take a 7-1 lead.
Cal began their comeback with an RBI single and a sacrifice fly to cut the elad to 7-3. Cal added two more in the eighth on a Devon Rodriguez homer but Baylor responded with a run in the ninth to make it 8-5. That's when the drama began. Chad Bunting reached on a single. Darrel Matthews then reached after a fielding error by the second baseman, leaving men on first and third and nobody out. Mich Theofanopoulos then reached on an error that led to an out at third but scored a run in the process to cut the lead to 8-6.
Leadoff hitter Austin Booker was then hit buy a pitch putting men on first and second. Tony Renda singled to drive in Dwight Tanaka (who had run for Theofanopoulos) and advance Booker to third. Chadd Krist followed that up with a walk to load the bases with one out and the score 8-7. Marcus Semien struck out for the second out of the inning, which brought up Devon Rodriguez. After falling behind 1-2, Rodriguez smacked a single into right field, bringing home Booker and Renda, and bringing the Cal bench onto the field to celebrate the stunning victory.
The win marks a huge comeback for Cal baseball. The Bears lost their tournament opener to Baylor, which moved them into the loser's bracket and required them to then win four games. Had they beaten Baylor they only would have needed two wins. Either way, Cal has advanced on to the super regionals. They will face Dallas Baptist June 10-13 with the winner advancing to the 2011 College World Series.