The early chaos and unpredictability of the 2015 College World Series has made way for a couple of gripping showdowns that will finally decide which nationally renowned schools get the chance to play for the national championship.
By the start of Wednesday, only six teams will be left standing in Omaha still vying for the title. Virginia has already won two games to advance to Saturday's semifinals while either TCU or Vanderbilt will join them Tuesday night, which leaves Wednesday and Thursday with elimination-game contests to decipher who will advance through.
Only one contest is on the slate for Wednesday, but it's a doozy. Take a look below for everything to know, along with a prediction.
Wednesday, June 17 Schedule
|Start Time (ET)||Matchup||TV||Live Stream|
|8 p.m.||Florida vs. Miami||ESPN||WatchESPN|
Complete bracket available at NCAA.com
Florida vs. Miami (Elimination Game)
The feeling of jubilation from Miami's Monday victory over Arkansas that kept the Hurricanes alive in the College World Series likely didn't last for long. They knew all along who would be up next, and it's not a foe that Miami should be happy to see.
With that said, it's not like Miami is short on confidence coming into Wednesday's do-or-die showdown with the in-state Florida Gators. After all, they're fresh off a walk-off victory after Jacob Heyward's game-winning single to beat Arkansas.
Bring on the Gators, Miami's official team Twitter account said:
However, recent history suggests the 'Canes will have their hands more than full when it comes to facing one of the national title favorites. And I don't mean recent history as in just this season.
Miami did play Florida way back in February and lost two of three, but those two losses came by just one run. When the two teams played in their CWS opener, however, the Gators smacked Miami, winning 15-3 on the opening night.
As Pat Dooley of the Gainesville Sun noted from that game, Florida scored as many runs in one inning as it did in the entire early-season series:
When the Gators faced Miami then, of course, its season wasn't on the line. But after Florida's 1-0 upset to Virginia put the favorites in the loser's bracket, it now is very much in jeopardy.
Not only did that defeat come by just one run, but it was Florida's first loss in 10 games—dating back to before the SEC tournament, which they won. Gators head coach Kevin O'Sullivan hasn't lost to Miami in seven NCAA tournament meetings and will come good again with a much superior lineup.
Prediction: Florida 8, Miami 3