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Category: Oregon State Beavers (Page 1 of 4)

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Retirement is not without Hassles: Back Home Again in Portland (but not for long) #1632

I’m back home again from Indy with a busted bracket, hangover, and little sleep. Not quite as bad as the 1987 Final Four in New Orleans, but 34 years older and out of drinking shape. O’Reilly’s Irish Pub turned out to be our rendezvous spot between games. My friend who secured the hard-to-get tickets was following Illinois to their disastrous end, while my Indy buddy and I saw an assortment of teams live at both Lucas Oil Stadium and Banker’s Life. Purdue failed to please, falling to The Mean Green, as the sole representative of the state’s once-renowned round-ball heritage. IU stumbled once again and missed the Big Dance altogether. Oregon’s opponent was eliminated by Covid and the only other Beavs fan I met was due to a rest room break at a bar appropriately called The Wild Beaver. I was wearing my Oregon State baseball shirt. 

The three flights in from Portland to Indianapolis went relatively smoothly but sleep was hard to come  by. A 5:30 a.m. run through a nearly abandoned terminal at O’Hare got me through the night – that’s 2:30 a.m. Portland time! The first stop after the airport was The World of Beer where I enjoyed my first cold one. Former IU star Dan Dakich hosted a live radio show that was organized by another friend of mine. I tried my best to work in some of my oldest media pals into our fast paced schedule while I was in town, while grabbing some BBQ wings. The Day 2 lunch was at the Workingman’s Friend with other dudes from my past. Next, on the agenda were stops at The Yardhouse, Slippery Noodle, Harry & Izzy’s, and 10 West. For me, it was an exhausting trip down memory lane in the town where I spent 15 years of my life. I was proud that the Hoosier State could pull off this basketball extravaganza, but without the packed arenas and screaming crowds these efforts were futile.

Over the two night span, I got together with 7 fellow basketball buds and made a few phone calls to those who couldn’t be there. Everyone was curious about the unprecedented experience of all these games in central Indiana, but the crowds were disappointing and the venues seemingly empty thanks to Covid. Zip ties were used to disable seats that were strategically socially distanced. At first, it looked like you could move down to empty chairs closer to the courts, but you couldn’t sit in them. Entire sections were blocked off and the atmosphere was sadly sterile. Plus, the mask patrol was monitoring everyone on cameras and warning us of ejection. I’m sure the players were glad to have live supporters, but their voices were lost in the  cavernous void. It was better to stay home and watch the action on TV, because the party crowds on the street or in the stands were sorely missing. A year ago downtown Indy was bustling with activity even on a normal day, but the tourney came off as a ghost town despite all these teams and fans in attendance.

One of my highlights of being back home again in Indiana was a bacon and maple cream long john, made by a popular donut spot. This was a late night surprise left on the doorstep of my good friend’s condo. His place is a bit far from the downtown action, so he did a lot of shuttling us around. We had a great time as always, bemusing about the miserable IU season and speculating on a new coach. March MADness took on new meaning with the anger we expressed in both 2020 and 2021. I’m home and back in the blog business, with lots of good weekend memories. 

Old Sport Shorts: Beaver Fever #1627

I can’t help think back to the TV show Leave It To Beaver starring Jerry Mathers (As “The Beaver” Cleaver). It aired from 1957-1963 in glorious black & white. Ipana toothpaste might have been a sponsor with a mascot named Bucky Beaver.  Since this is a family blog, I won’t get into any other childhood Beaver references. All silliness aside, our move to Oregon seven years ago put me in touch with both Beaver and Duck sports, so I’ve become a fan. I’ve visited both campuses and watched both schools play on several occasions. As a Hoosier, I liken it to the rivalry between Purdue and Indiana, but instead of an Old Oaken Bucket, it’s a Civil War. 

A few years ago, I followed the Baseball Beavs to the College World Series in Omaha with a good friend. We also watched both basketball teams play at the Moda Center for two of Phil Knight’s Nike Invitationals, the first to celebrate his 80th birthday. We then saw the defending national champion Beavers play at T-Mobile Stadium in Seattle, along with our Alma Mater, Indiana. In addition, there were Oregon State baseball games at Ron Tonkin Field, home of the Hillsboro Hops, that we attended. I even saw the team play at Surprise Stadium in Arizona for a preseason tournament. 

It was almost exactly a year ago that I was on a flight to Phoenix with the Beaver baseball team. In route, all their games were cancelled along with Spring Training and the NCAA basketball tournament thanks to Covid. Next weekend, I finally get to go to a live sporting event after this year-long hiatus. Despite only 25% capacity, we have tickets to the first round of the NCAA Tournament in Indianapolis. Today’s Selection Show will determine if I’ll get to see the Ducks or Beavers play. They are my dogs in the fight. (See Post  #1626).

The Beavs had to win the Pac12 title to make the Big Dance, a remarkable feat they pulled off last night. Three straight victories over UCLA, Oregon, and Colorado elevated their overall record to 17-12, while claiming the conference automatic bid. It was their first ever Pac12 tourney crown, earning the ticket to Indianapolis. Mine was hard to come by, but not that hard! I’ll pack my Beavers and Ducks gear and take-in the tournament aura in my former hometown. I’ve got Duck Dreams and Beaver Fever!

Old Sport Shorts: Dog In the Fight #1626

It’s March and on the last two days of the regular season I don’t have a dog in the fight. I.U. was the first to be eliminated. Their season is mercifully over. Purdue was beaten a few days ago by Ohio State. The undefeated Zags easily won their tournament a few days ago so they aren’t playing this weekend. The Beavers beat the Ducks in basketball, while the Ducks prevailed in baseball, a rare flip-flop of program strengths. My four most hated teams are battling it out for the BIG bracket title, a tournament that I.U. has never won since inception. Not much to look forward to over the next few days except the tourney draw. 

When I get to Indianapolis next weekend, I will struggle with allegiance. The Ducks and Boilers will get another chance for post season glory, while the Zags should cruise through their first two games. Oregon State will only get in, despite three straight Pac12 wins, if they beat Colorado today, a team they’ve lost to twice. The number 12 has been added to their jerseys as a reminder that they were picked to finish last in the conference by the pre-season pollsters. They could win the Pac12 tourney for the first time in program history. Now that’s a fighting Dog!

The Hoosiers were the worst kind of dog, finishing with six straight conference losses, rather than peaking for a March Madness run. They face an off-season of uncertainty as Archie Miller’s fate is determined. Trayce Jackson-Davis will not be back though I don’t see much of a future for him in the NBA. He certainly got to the free throw line frequently but the rim doesn’t favor his short game and he can’t shoot well from the charity stripe. He could be a star if he stayed in college two more years, but Archie is not a teaching coach. The G-League is his certain destiny. The only guy that did hit free throws this year, Al Durham, could come back for another year – but probably won’t. I’m not at all looking forward to next year without the shooters, big bodies, or innovative coaching that can effectively compete in the BIG. Unless there is change, my hapless Hoosiers are nothing but a barkless dog without a fight!

Old Sport Shorts: Jealous! #1613

It was no coincidence that I chose a “Jealous” graphic with a green background because I’m Green with Envy. Too many programs in the BIG conference have now surpassed my Indiana Hoosiers in building success. A team that I grew up with and saw win National Championships and even go undefeated is now in the bottom tier and in danger of not even going to the NCAA tournament for the fourth straight year. As I watch this morning against Michigan, I’m preparing myself for a third straight loss and what will probably extend to five before the BIG tournament. All the pregame talk is about #3 Michigan and not even any speculation for an I.U. upset. I’m jealous!

Once upon a time, Michigan was a triple victory on the way to a 1976 National title at 32-0. Purdue was at the very least a split every year, but Coach Archie Miller has not been able to beat them, with only one last chance this season. It could very well be the last few games we’ll even watch him as the Indiana coach. Juwan Howard has risen to the top of the BIG in his first year as coach, while Archie is in his fourth year and dwindling in the conference basement. Each week another team breaks out of a slump against the Hoosiers. The last two games they’ve built big first half leads only to fall apart in the end. Other teams can make free throws or three-point shots and take care of the ball. Not I.U.! I’m no longer mad – just Jealous!

The Oregon Ducks are making a stretch run, Purdue is solidly in the tournament field, Gonzaga is undefeated, but Indiana is on the outside looking in. I’m Jealous! More and more Indiana high school stars are going to out-of-state schools, if not they want to go to be a Boilermaker. The Hoosiers can’t hit the side of a barn or defend against the three and seem to just be going through the motions. I miss the days of good fundamental basketball, but mostly I miss winning. Other teams are winning – I’m Green with Jealousy!

 

Old Sport Shorts: Favorites #1463

Baseball and cold pizza, two of my current favorites, came together for lunch yesterday, before the yard work started. The White Sox were up against the higher-seeded A’s and playing on their home turf. I’ve never been a fan of the once Kansas City now Oakland A’s, but since childhood the White Sox have always been my favorite. Catcher Sherm Lollar has perpetuated this relationship since 1959. Granted, I’ve strayed to the Cubs at times when they were winning, following suit with my son and dad. I’ve been fortunate to see both Chicago favorites first-hand in World Series victories. 

Lucas Giolito pitched seven innings of perfect baseball and the Sox bats were hot in a 4-1 victory. The lucky socks proved their worth. Today, I’ll wear a Cubs sock on one foot and the Sox sock on the other, hoping for the Chicago sweep. There will be no fans to interfere with any Marlin foul balls, reminiscent of Steve Bartman in 2003, so there should be no excuses for anything less than a Cubbies “W” at Wrigley.   

I do have a busy today with a second moving estimate, Cubs & Sox baseball, dinner to cook. and the first game of the NBA Finals, in addition to the eight televised MLB playoff games. LeBron has oddly become a basketball favorite of mine, even though he’s never played for the teams I support, with the exception of the Olympics. Part of this is the lack of respect he gets, especially from Michael Jordan fans. In my opinion, they are equal greats from separate eras. Comparisons are unfair, especially considering that there wasn’t nearly as much free agency in the Jordan era and contact rules were vastly different. 

While championship match-ups were being determined in baseball and basketball, the Tampa Bay Lightning claimed their second Stanley Cup title. I’ve officially adopted them since we now own property in Florida, along with the Rays, Buccaneers, and Rowdies. Having now owned homes in six states, I’ve amassed quite a collection of teams, improving my chances to win something…anything. Chicago is still my favorites sports town, with the exception of the Bulls. Michigan teams don’t count. The Portland Trailblazes have now replaced the Pacers as my favorite NBA team. When it comes to college football, I lean to the Texas Longhorns and Oregon Ducks, even though my pigskin favorite will always be the hapless Indiana Hoosiers. Soccer favs are the MLS Portland Timbers and Indiana University, while my vote for college baseball goes to the Oregon State Beavers. College basketball is hands down Indiana, as well. I do enjoy sports of all kinds and genders, but do not have as strong of allegiances. I also know the teams and players I hate in any given league – but this is all about favorites. 

I still have fond memories of watching a White Sox playoff game back in 1983 from a motel room in Indianapolis. I was down there from Ft. Wayne on an overnight business trip and played hooky for the afternoon game. It was players like LaMarr Hoyt, Floyd Bannister, Harold Baines, Carlton Fisk, and Ron Kittle, as I check the memory banks of Wikipedia. Tony LaRussa was the coach of this team that won their division and made it to the American League Championship, losing to the Orioles after winning the first game of a series of five. The Orioles went on to win the World Series. It was the first time the Sox were in the postseason since the 1959 World Series, featuring for me a home run by Sherm Lollar. They wore the patriotic uniforms with SOX in block letters on a blue stripe, trimmed in red, across the chest. They’ve brought them out on several occasions this year – one of my least favorite looks!

2008 was the last White Sox postseason win, falling 3 games to 1 against the Rays in the opening series. They did win the division that year. The team featured Ozzie Guillen, Jermaine Dye, Ken Griffey, Jr., Jim Thome, Paul Konerko, Nick Swisher, John Danks, and Mark Buehrle, along with Manager Ozzie Guillen. The Sox were eliminated on the day I started work in Austin, Texas, one of my least favorite jobs. 

 

Retirement is not without Hassles: Marriott #1186

For those unlike me that work, it’s the first day of the week. It’s often difficult for me after three full years of retirement to distinguish one day from another, but it definitely felt like a Monday. Traffic was heavy and bunched together, so I had to dodge a lot of vehicles and bikes on day 4,033 of my consecutive running streak. A train made it impossible to cross a busy intersection and many stop lights were not in sync for me. As a result, a ran 3.25 miles rather than the 3.1 standard that I’ve set for myself. With snow in the forecast, it portends to be a difficult week on the streets.

The Academy Awards nominations were announced this morning, and my wife and I are relatively current on this year’s productions. This past week we streamed both The Two Popes and Marriage Story. Today, we plan to see 1917 and get back in the habit of justifying our Regal annual pass investment. We haven’t been to a movie since Richard Jewell just over a month ago. Kathy Bates was nominated for her role as his mother. We have yet to see Parasite, Little Women, Bombshell, Harriet, or Pain and Glory. With unlimited access, there’s really no excuse for not sitting through them all in the next few weeks. 

Tonight is the College Football Championship with L.S.U. battling Clemson. It seems like it’s taken forever to get here, much like the drawn-out drama of each year’s Superbowl. There’s now a chance for a redo of the very first one in 1966, then called the “AFL–NFL World Championship Game,” between the Chiefs and the Packers. Admittedly, basketball is still my favorite sport, despite the lack of success by my favorite teams. The season goes by as quickly as the action on the court, unlike baseball that seems to never end. It’s still a great sport for a nap and filled with great history. I will watch football tonight out of curiosity, since most of the Vegas money seems to be on L.S.U., while title experience favors Clemson. Once again, the BIG and PAC12 conferences failed to make the finals and “The South” continues to dominate. Good thing it didn’t happen in the Civil War! I still think it’s odd that Oregon, one of the states that was least affected by that battle, uses “The Civil War” to hype the in-state rivalry in sports and academics between the Ducks and Oregon State Beavers dating back to 1894. 

We’re trying to organize a Holiday family trip to Kauai to round out our travel year. It was more “affordable” to go mid-December rather than Thanksgiving or Christmas, so it now depends on the work schedules of my step-daughters and their new husbands. We can take advantage of the Marriott Vacation Club for a record fifth time this calendar year, having also already booked condos in Orlando, Vegas, San Francisco, and Bali. With my wife’s recent retirement, this is her year to celebrate and spend some of the IRA savings she has accumulated through the years. We’ll also use Marriott Bonvoy points as part of our summer trip through Glacier National Park via stops in Walla-Walla and Spokane Washington. It will then extend into Canada and three nights at the historic Prince of Wales hotel that is not yet a Marriott property. It probably will be someday! 

Retirement is not without Hassles: New Year Review #1178

As I look back over the past 21 New Year’s Eve celebrations with my wife, 2 have been spent in the hospital, 3 with family & friends, 12 in fancy restaurants, and 4 at home with the dogs. Allow me to reflect on just this past year of memories that have been both good and bad, in no particular order of importance. Only two, including tonight, have ended with a relaxing night in a hotel room. 

The Year in Review:

My son turned 45

Two of my wife’s daughters wed great young men, so I’m now twice a step-father-in-law, joining my expanded family of a daughter-in-law of now over ten years

The two very different ceremonies were at The Presidio in San Francisco and Powell’s Rare Book Room in Portland. 

Both newlywed couples took gift honeymoons from us in Hawaii, while my son and his wife enjoyed our time-share condo in Orlando

We sold our stand-alone Portland condo in twelve days and at a profit. 

My oldest grandchild turned 12 and he took up golf

My middle grandchild turned 10 and we help her with dance lessons

My youngest grandchild celebrated her first birthday and I started her college fund

My wife joined me in retirement just a few months ago, while I just enjoyed my third full year

We traveled together to Thailand, Florida, Phoenix, Tucson, San Francisco, Walla-Walla, New York, Indiana, Maui, Vancouver, Chicago, Steamboat, Seattle, and McMinnville.

We saw Elton John, Pink, Goo-Goo Dolls, and Train in concert

I grew my Ancestry family tree to include over 18,000 relatives

We helped free a Jeep stuck up to its front axle in deep Panama City Beach sand 

I donated blood on several occasions 

I finished with over 15,000 Buffalo Wild Wings points to use for future “Leadership Meetings”

We moved to a downtown apartment and started using public transportation

We lost cat Frankie and schnauzer Tinker to old age

We attended our 7th Outstanding In The Field in Vancouver, BC – our first international dining event

My wife’s mother sadly died at age 97

We saw Beetlejuice, Moulin Rouge, and Tootsie on Broadway

I missed my 50th high school reunion

I lost two college fraternity brothers

We saw the 60th annual Twilight Zone movie presentation on the big screen

I.U. soccer lost to I.U. Santa Barbara and failed to reach the National Championship like last year

We watched I.U. baseball win and lose in Seattle and Oregon State beat I.U. the same weekend. The Beavers were not able to return to the College World Series

I.U. football earned a spot in the Gator Bowl

I.U. basketball failed to make the tournament again

The Chicago Bears failed to make the playoffs

The Cubs did not win the Division or make the playoffs. The White Sox didn’t come close

The Portland Trailblazers enjoyed playoff success but fell short to the eventual champion Warriors.

I saw Oregon basketball beat Memphis at the Moda Center

Oregon earned a spot in the Rose Bowl

I’ve added to my Sherm Lollar baseball collection while drastically downsizing my Cubs memorabilia to accommodate our much smaller living space

I gave-up my once-framed I.U. jersey to its rightful owner Kent Benson #54

We had Portland visits from my wife’s Indy girlfriends, my wife’s youngest daughter, and our Decatur friends

We reconnected with many old friends around the country

We paid off all our credit cards and the balance on our Decatur, Illinois mortgage

We eliminated most of our wine club memberships

We invested in more Marriott Vacation Club points

We planned and paid for many trips next year including Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon, Spring Training, Alcatraz, the Great Pyramid, and Glacier National Park

We bought the Regal Unlimited movie pass for next year and can easily walk to the theater

My wife’s oldest daughter and husband bought their first house. They also adopted Falco to play with now lonely Tally, our 10-year old schnauzer

My wife’s youngest daughter took a new job with Stanford Hospital and moved with her husband to San Francisco

We’ll end the year and day #7,861 together with dinner at Bern’s Steakhouse in Tampa and start the New Year with theme park visits with my grand children

We looked at retirement properties along the Gulf Coast of Florida

We celebrated our 18th wedding anniversary at Joel Palmer House in Oregon wine country

We met my cousin in Phuket, Thailand

I finished Game of Thrones

We went to the King Tut exhibit at OMSI in preparation for next year’s trip to Egypt

I completed the 11th consecutive year of my daily running streak

I had just one minor cold this past year

I just now finished my 1,178th blog post

 

Happy New Year to all!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Retirement is not without Hassles: Virgos Unite #1043

We had our second showing of the house last night, but it interfered with “Date Night” plans. As a result, we got some Hawaiian Time pulled pork to-go and moved our dinner at Yonder to tonight. Tomorrow’s “Leadership Meeting” will instead be held today. It’s all part of a topsy-turvy week that ends on a plane to Steamboat, Colorado. The great outdoors will indeed be a refreshing change of pace from pet duties and watching silly shows like The Sopranos, Yellowstone, and Rome. Retirement is pleasantly boring and simple between trips to the airport. 

Birthday celebrations have been the highlight of the week. Yesterday’s was special at a local assisted living facility, another reminder of my inevitable mortality. Our 98-year old friend, Vince Pesky, blew out the candles on his cake. He was once the bat boy for the Portland Beavers, with a brother who was a Boston Red Sox Hall of Famer, immortalized through the “Pesky Pole” in Fenway Park’s right field.  He’s now officially the oldest person I personally know, although our acquaintance has only been in the last few years. A fellow baseball memorabilia collector introduced us, and since all three of us observe a birthday this same week, a drink or two was in order. This coupled with a best friend back in Indianapolis who’s shared a steak dinner with me for many years now in honor of the proximity of our two birth dates. I also have a cousin who shares my big day and a former co-worker to toast later in the week. Virgos Unite!

Virgos are born between August 23rd and September 22nd, under the sixth astrological sign of the Zodiac. According to Wikipedia, “the constellation Virgo has multiple different origins depending on which mythology is being studied. Most myths generally view Virgo as a virgin/maiden with heavy association with wheat. In Greek and Roman mythology they relate the constellation to Demeter, mother of Persephone, or Proserpina, the Roman goddess of the harvest. Another association is with the myth of Parthenos (meaning virgin in Greek), which explains how the actual constellation Virgo came to be.”

V for virtuous
I for intelligent
R for responsible
G for generous
O for optimistic

 

 

 

Old Sport Shorts: Go Home #961

While I’ve been enjoying being at home, most of my baseball favorites have been sent home with their tails between their legs. The Oregon State Beavers didn’t have far to go after being eliminated from the NCAA baseball tourney on their home field. The Indiana Hoosiers at least won one elimination game before being knocked out by Louisville. Meanwhile, the Cardinals swept the division leading Cubs, taking advantage of their Busch Stadium home. It was the sixth loss in seven games for the Cubbies to fall behind the Brewers in the standings. Unlike the Beavers and Hoosiers that were sent home packing, the Cubs season is far from over. At least, they get to go home and face the Angels tomorrow. 

Home Field Advantage is a proven positive this year. The Cubs swept the Cards in the friendly confines of Wrigley earlier this year, while the Cards returned the favor at Busch. They will play again next week at Wrigley to break the overall series tie and determine the Pre-All-Star-Break Champion. The Cubs are 18-10 at home and the Cards are 19-12. Both have losing records on the road. This weekend’s sweep is the first against the Cubs since early April when the Braves brought out the broom at SunTrust Park in Atlanta. Chicago will host the next 7 games and will hopefully reverse their recent skid. 

On the positive side, the cross-town White Sox have been far more successful of late, winning 6 or their last 7, including a sweep of the Royals and 2 of 3 against the Indians at their home, Guaranteed Rate Field. I will always know it as Comiskey Park, even though it was U.S Cellular Park when they last won the World Series in 2005. If it weren’t for the success of the White Sox at home this weekend, baseball would have been a total bummer. It only goes to prove that “there’s no place like home (regardless of what they name it.)”

Old Sport Shorts: Baseball Gods #959

The “Baseball Gods” weren’t very good to me yesterday as my teams were mostly losers. The only exception was the White Sox who one their record 5th straight of the season. To most franchises, this would not be much of an accomplishment but the “Baseball Gods” have not be very favorable to the Sox the last few years. Young players like Yoan Moncada, Carlos Rodon, Lucas Giolito, Tim Anderson, and Eloy Jimenez lead the team that currently sits 10.5 games behind the league leading Twins in the American League Central. Last night they moved past the Indians into second in the standings with a 7-1 head-to-head victory over the Tribe. One more victory and the team will be at .500, a positive step up from last year’s 62-100 season (.383). They were a bright ray of sunshine on yesterday’s dismal scoreboard. Unfortunately, the “Baseball Gods” were unfriendly to Sox fans today.

The Cubs, on the other hand, seem to be resorting back to start-of-the-season bad form when they lost their first three series. They were on a roll until the last place Reds stopped their hot streak with not one but two series losses in May. Then the Cubs traveled to Houston and lost two out of three before last night’s extra inning Cardinals victory at the unfriendly confines of Busch Stadium. To add more salt to the wound, it was the first time the Cards had walked-off all year, to the delight of their obnoxious fans. As a result, the Cubbies are in danger of falling short in their third straight series. If you win each series, you’ll win it all, so any set-back against the rival Cardinals is demoralizing. I was surprised, however, that problem-child Yu Darvish somehow only allowed three hits through 6 innings of work after walking his first two batters. He came away with his sixth straight no-decision and still has an ERA of over 5. This one-run loss was the first example example of how the “Baseball Gods” were not on my side today. 

Before the Cubs loss, I monitored the Indiana Hoosier baseball NCAA tournament opener against Illinois State. After winning the BIG Ten regular season, they fell flat on their faces in tourney action. This misfortune continued into last night’s one-run loss to the Redbirds. Indiana struggled early but came back to tie it in the seventh, only to give up the game winner in the 9th. The “Baseball Gods” were not wearing Cream & Crimson. I.U. did manage to rebound against UIC this afternoon 9-5 to stave off elimination. Will the “Baseball Gods” be there for them tomorrow and Sunday?

Yesterday’s baseball misery continued into the evening in Corvallis where the defending National Champion Oregon State Beavers started their quest for back-to-back titles. Today they are in danger of being the third Championship team in history to be eliminated the year after with two straight losses. It could even happen at home. Last night, they rallied to finally take the lead in the 7th against Cincinnati. However, they too then sadly lost by one in the 9th. The “Baseball Gods” were definitely with them in Omaha during the final game of the College World Series last June when a miss-played foul pop-up gave them the opportunity to capitalize on a second chance at-bat against Arkansas. (See Post #583). Will the “Baseball Gods” answer their comeback prayers today? 

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