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La Verne’s Rossman Leads UC San Diego to Division II College World Series Semifinals

May 25, 2010
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Photo by Naomi Stukey

Photo by Naomi Stukey

La Verne’s Matt Rossman pitched UC San Diego into the National Championship Semifinals of the Division II College World Series on Monday night after hurling an 11-inning, two hit, 2-1 masterpiece against Central Missouri at the USA Baseball National Training complex in Cary, N.C.

 

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“I’m excited about going to the semifinals, but right now all I can talk about is the courageous outing that Matt Rossman just gave us,” Tritons head head coach Dan O’ Brien said. “He’s a senior, he’s a veteran, he’s our team captain, but most importantly, he’s a flat-out winner.”

Rossman was dealing a no-hitter into the eighth when he surrendered back-to-back doubles by Tyler Ruch and Jon Wegener, which turned out to be Central Missouri’s only run and hits of the night. Rossman struck out a career-high 12 batters while walking just two. He retired 34 of the 37 batters he faced.

“I felt good and I had three pitches going today,” Rossman said. “My change-up was extra effective and the cutter got me through the last four or five innings. I was keeping it down and they couldn’t hit it.”

The Tritons broke the 1-1 tie in the top of the 11th. Danny Susdorf singled for his third hit to lead off the inning before advancing to second on a balk and moving to third on a wild pitch by UCM reliever Nick Phillips. Kellen Lee, who was 2-for-3 followed with an RBI single to score Susdorf.

Rossman then retired the Mules in order to nail down the win and send UCSD to the semifinals for the second consecutive year.

“That was his ball tonight and he prepared himself for this moment all year,” O’Brien said. “He rose to the occasion and that’s what great players do.”

“It’s all about winning at this point,” Rossman said. “It’s huge to stay on that winner’s side (of the bracket). I have no idea what my pitch count was but they weren’t taking me out.”

For the record, Rossman, a third-team All-American and  the NCBWA West Region Pitcher of the Year, threw 124 pitches. Rossman is also the son of Rick Rossman, director of the Sports Medicine Center at Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center in Pomona, Calif.

Filed May 25, 2010

UCSD, now 53-7 on the season, advances to the National Championship Semifinals beginning on Thursday. The Tritons will face the team that emerges from the loser’s side of Bracket Two at 7 p.m., 4 p.m. Pacific.

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