Louisville walks off against Illinois State 4-3 in NCAA
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Alex Binelas’ walk-off single in the bottom of the ninth inning scored Trey Leonard and top-seeded Louisville edged Illinois State 4-3 in an NCAA regional final on Monday, sending the Cardinals to their sixth Super Regional in the past seven seasons.
After committing a center field error in the top of the ninth for an unearned run that helped the No. 3 Redbirds tie the game, Leonard reached on a fielder’s choice sacrifice bunt that ended up advancing Justin Lavey when the initial out call at second was reversed on review. Lavey was eventually forced at home, but the bases were loaded for Binelas, who drilled Mitch Vogrin’s first pitch up the middle for the game-winning run.
Leonard, a sophomore, pinch-ran for Zeke Pinkham in the seventh and scored Louisville’s go-ahead run on Zach Britton’s pinch-hit single.
Michael Kirian (3-1) earned the victory for Louisville (47-16), which will face the East Carolina in the Super Regional after missing last season. Jacob Gilmore (2-2) took the loss for Illinois State (36-26), which had sought its first Super Regional berth.