Indiana's DeNato Shuts Down Louisville with Complete-Game Shutout

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Indiana's DeNato Shuts Down Louisville with Complete-Game Shutout
Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

There have been plenty of predictions, projections and recommendations in regard to what pitcher to watch at the College World Series. 

Few of them included Joey DeNato.

DeNato took to the mound in Game 2 of the College World Series against Louisville and didn't leave it until the game was over. He threw nine shutout innings while striking out eight, allowing four hits and walking only three batters to give his team a 2-0 victory. Louisville couldn't figure him out all night, and the run Kyle Schwarber scored in the first inning turned out to be all DeNato would need to lead the Hoosiers to victory.

It was the second time this season DeNato had a solid outing against the Cardinals.

"Definitely one of the top performances I've ever had," DeNato said afterward. "But I think getting ahead in the count and throwing my curveball first strike, first pitch, that's mostly what I was doing all night, and it was working well for me."

Louisville coach Dan McDonnell was impressed with DeNato as well.

"We just couldn't stay on the ball, whether we were thinking fastball and he threw some really good breaking balls or we were in breaking ball counts, he could jam you in," McDonnell said. "And obviously he's got great numbers on the year. But he's really handcuffed us twice."

Indiana catcher Kyle Schwarber did his part for the Hoosiers early on. After logging only three hits in 12 at-bats against Louisville during the regular season, Schwarber got a base hit in each of hit first two trips to the plate, scoring in the first inning.

Many, including myself, predicted that Schwarber would have to be on his game for Indiana to have a shot at winning in Omaha. He finished 2-for-5 on the night.

The Hoosiers will now face Mississippi State on Monday after the Bulldogs defeated No. 3 national seed Oregon State in Game 1. Louisville will also play on Monday. They'll face Oregon State in the first game of the losers' bracket. 

 

J.P. Scott is a Senior Analyst for Bleacher Report. Unless otherwise noted, all quotes were obtained firsthand via the postgame press conference.

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