After losing first game, Colorado Mesa rallies to win first region title since '09
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. -- It took five years but the Colorado Mesa Mavericks are headed back to the NCAA Division II Championship following a 7-6 win against the Texas A&M-Kingsville Javelinas on Sunday.
Colorado Mesa won the regional title for the first time since 2009 after it was forced to play the 'if necessary' game following a 9-8 loss.
In typical fashion for the tournament, Colorado Mesa fell behind 3-2 after four innings of play and was forced to battle back.
The Mavericks tied it in the fifth inning on a RBI groundout by Austin Kaiser.
Colorado Mesa took the lead for good in the bottom of the sixth inning. After Garrett Woodward scored on a wild pitch, Austin Wallingford hammered a 0-1 pitch over the mini-monster in left field to put the Mavericks up 6-3.
After Texas A&M-Kingsville picked up a single run in the top half of the eighth inning, Kevan Elcock led off the Mavericks half of the eighth with a home run to left field. The home run was his second of the season and gave CMU a 7-4 advantage.
The Javelinas scored twice in the ninth inning and stranded the bases loaded when the final out was recorded.
Matt Delay got the start on the mound for the championship and pitched into the ninth inning. Delay went 8.1 innings and allowed six runs on 12 hits, walked two and struck out four. He improved to 9-0 on the season with the win and was named to the all-tournament team.
Elcock finished the game 2-for-2 with a double and the home run. He came into the game to replace Tony Audino defensively in the fifth inning.
Derrick Garcia finished the game 2-for-4 and was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player after batting .571 (12-for-21) in the Mavericks' five games.
Austin Wallingford and Austin Kaiser were also named to the All-Tournament Team.
Colorado Mesa is now 44-11 on the season and 31-1 on their home field.