MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Albany State (now 39-10 on the season) scored seven runs in the first inning and coasted to a 8-3 victory over Edward Waters (26-24) in Game 11 to advance to Saturday’s title tussle in the Black College Baseball World Series presented by Tyson Foods at Riverwalk Park – home of the Class AA Montgomery Biscuits – Friday.
ASU, which is now 3-0 in the tourney and has the most victories among any Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference squad and has been ranked No. 1 in multiple Black College Nines’ national polls, moves on to meet the winner of late Friday night’s Florida Memorial-Rust contest for the other slot in the championship clash.
Edward Waters, the defending champion in the popular HBCU series, could not get untracked and began running low on pitching in its fourth game of the BCBWSPBTF while closing 2-2 this week. The Golden Rams hammered 10 more singles after the first frame and held off a belated uprising to capture the NCAA Division II bracket of the tourney.
Landon Kiefer (9-2) was the winning pitcher for the Golden Rams while working seven innings and scattering five hits with six strikeouts. Sebastian Velez (3-4) was tagged with the loss.
Leading the 17-hit batting onslaught for ASU was Sydney, Australia, product Zane Ross with first 5-for-5 showing of the series. EWU standout Leonel Garcia had a 2-for-3 performance at the dish with one RBI in his team’s setback.
The four-day tournament consists of double-elimination competition among NCAA Division II and NAIA teams in separate brackets for three days and a championship contest between bracket winners Saturday at 5 p.m. (CDT). The title game will be preceded by a special Black College Baseball World Series Presented by Tyson Foods Home Run Derby at 2 p.m. (CDT).
Thursday games (all times CDT) – Game 5 – Edward Waters 9, Savannah State 5; Game 6 – Rust 9, Wiley 2; Game 7 – Albany State 12, Bluefield State 2 (7 innings); Game 8 – 7:30 p.m. – Florida Memorial 12, Paine 2 (8 inn.).
Friday’s Schedule – Game 9 – Edward Waters 9, Bluefield State 6; Game 10 – 12:30 p.m. – Rust 12, Paine 6. Game 11 – 4 p.m. – Albany State 8, Edward Waters 3; Game 12 – 7:30 p.m. – Florida Memorial vs. Rust.
Saturday Championship: 5 p.m. (CDT) – Albany State vs. Game 12 winner. Home Run Derby sponsored by Guardians at 2 p.m.