words_Nick Engvall

When an athlete finds him or herself competing at the pinnacle event of their sport, their performance can define their future.Blake Cooper of the South Carolina Gamecocks in the 2010 College World Series

For South Carolina’s Blake Cooper, his performance all but guaranteed himself a future in baseball. Cooper, coming off of just three days rest, pitched an incredible game against UCLA in the first game of the 2010 College World Series. Blake went 8 innings, giving up only 3 hits and striking out 10 as the Gamecocks took game one of the best-of-three series 7-1. In fact it wasn’t until the ninth inning that Cooper even started to give the Bruins a chance, until then he had only given up one hit the entire night.

Cooper’s control and precision on the mound is what seemed to perplex Bruins batters. With his fastball in the 80s all night, it was the other pitches in his repertoire that made him nearly un-hittable. Cooper used a dominating sinker, and the movement on his curve ball and slider to keep UCLA’s offense off balance in the batter’s box.

The South Carolina offense seemed to come up with all the big hits when they needed them. Short stop Bobby Haney had a career high three runs batted in, while going 2 for 3.

Both South Carolina and UCLA are looking for their school’s very first national championship in college baseball. With game one going to South Carolina, the Bruins will look to keep their hopes alive tonight, while South Carolina looks to solidify their team as the best in the school’s history with a victory.

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image via yahoo