The LSU Tigers face a win-or-go-home game Tuesday night when they face the Florida Gators in Game 2 of the College World Series.
The Gators drew first blood in the series when they built an early lead and held on for a 4-3 win Monday night in the first game of the CWS at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, Nebraska.
Florida starting pitcher Brady Singer registered 12 strikeouts, and superb reliever Michael Byrne closed out the game with two excellent innings.
Jonathan India belted a two-run double in the fourth inning for the Gators, and that helped Florida seize control of the game.
"I was really excited for that situation to help my team produce some runs," India said, per Anthony Chiusano of NCAA.com. "I was just sitting fastball. He threw a curveball the first pitch, it was in the dirt. I sat dead red, got my pitch and drove it in."
LSU will send star pitcher Jared Poche to the mound in an attempt to save their season in Game 2. First pitch is scheduled for 8 p.m. ET, and the game will be televised by ESPN.
Poche is not a fireballer, as most of his pitches don't exceed 90 miles per hour. However, Poche gets excellent movement from his fastball and also throws a dramatic curveball that is difficult for good hitters to drive.
LSU head coach Paul Mainieri has full confidence that Poche can extend the season for the Tigers.
"We respect the University of Florida, but we feel like we're right there with them," Mainieri said, per Chiusano. "And we've got one of our guys going tomorrow. Jared Poche has been a warrior for us for four years."
Poche has 39 career wins for the Tigers, and that's more than any other LSU pitcher. He has recorded a 12-3 record this season along with a 3.33 earned-run average. He has held opposing batters to a .231 batting average.
Scott Carter @GatorsScott
#Gators will start freshman Tyler Dyson in Game 2 on Tuesday vs. #LSU.2017-6-27 03:22:48
Tyler Dyson will take the mound for the Gators as he attempts to close out the Tigers and win the CWS. Dyson, a freshman right-hander, has a 3-0 record and a 3.55 ERA.
Dyson is going to have to hold down the LSU offense. Slugging Greg Deichmann has to be his biggest concern. Deichmann has hit 19 home runs and driven in 73 runs. Kramer Robertson is hitting .308 with eight home runs and 43 RBI.
Deichmann said there is no loss of confidence on the LSU side.
"We're not hanging our heads about anything," he said, per Eric Olson of the Associated Press (h/t Newsday). "We had a lot of great stuff we did tonight. We had a couple of tough breaks that didn't go our way. We're going to come out tomorrow with a lot of positivity, energy and get after it."
Florida's Nelson Maldonado is hitting .303 with six home runs and 32 RBI, while slugging JJ Schwarz is the Gators' best power hitter with 12 homers and 54 RBI. India has six home runs and 32 RBI.
Those two and the rest of the Gators are going to have to figure out Poche if Florida is going to win the College World Series Tuesday night.
If LSU forces a decisive game, it will be played Wednesday night.