UCLA RF Eric Filia delivered two RBIs in the top of 4th inning that ended up being the difference as the Bruins held off the Mississippi State Bulldogs 3-1 in a Game 1 victory in the College World Series Final on Monday in Omaha. Mississippi State managed one run in the bottom of the 4th, but that was it as the Bruins quieted the Bulldog lineup throughout the night.
Eric Filia was 2 for 3 on the night with 2 RBIs, delivering a clutch performance when UCLA needed it most. Three runs were more than enough for the UCLA pitching staff as they frustrated the Mississippi State batters all night long with great control and pitch placement, only walking two over the course of the evening. The Bruins’ pitchers dictated the Mississippi State at-bats by getting ahead in the count with early strikes and keeping the Bulldogs off-balance in the box.
UCLA also focused on keeping highly-rated and productive Mississippi State prospect Hunter Renfroe out of the game. The result: an 0 for 3 night for Renfroe with 2 strikeouts, the only strikeouts by any Bulldog hitter on the night.
Mississippi made things interesting in the bottom of the 9th by getting two on with one out, but a fly ball to left and a ground ball back to the pitcher quickly ended the threat and ended the game. All the pressure is now on the Mississippi State Bulldogs, as they must win two straight games in order to win the College World Series final. UCLA will look to close out the series and take the title on Tuesday night.