Created: Mon, 19 May 2014 02:05:00 MST
Updated: Mon, 19 May 2014 02:22:59 MST
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. – It took five years but the Colorado Mesa Mavericks are headed back to Cary, North Carolina for the NCAA Division II World Series following a 7-6 win over the Texas A&M-Kingsville Javelinas Sunday afternoon at Suplizio Field.
A crowd of 744 people saw the Mavericks capture the NCAA Regional Championship for the first time since 2009. Colorado Mesa was forced to play the 'if necessary' game following a 9-8 loss in game one on the day.
In typical fashion for the tournament, Colorado Mesa fell behind 3-2 after four innings of play and were forced to battle back.
The Mavericks tied it in the fifth inning on a RBI groundout by Austin Kaiser.
Colorado Mesa took the lead for good in the bottom of the sixth inning. After Garrett Woodward scored on a wild pitch, Austin Wallingford hammered a 0-1 pitch over the mini-monster in left field to put the Mavericks up 6-3.
After Texas A&M-Kingsville picked up a single run in the top half of the eighth inning, freshman Kevan Elcock led off the Mavericks half of the eighth with a home run to left field. The home run was his second of the season and gave CMU a 7-4 advantage.
The Javelinas scored twice in the ninth inning and left the bases loaded when the final out was recorded.
Junior Matt Delay got the start on the mound for the championship and pitched into the ninth inning. Delay went 8.1 innings and allowed six runs on 12 hits, walked two and struck out four. He improved to 9-0 on the season with the win and was named to the all-tournament team.
Elcock finished the game 2-for-2 with a double and the home run. He came into the game to replace Tony Audino defensively in the fifth inning.
Derrick Garcia finished the game 2-for-4 and was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player after batting .571 (12-for-21) in the Mavericks' five games.
Austin Wallingford and Austin Kaiser were also named to the All-Tournament Team.
Colorado Mesa is now 44-11 on the season and 31-1 on their home field.
The Mavericks will play East Region Champion St. Thomas Aquinas at 3:00pm (MDT) on Sunday, May 25. It will be the first time the two schools have met. St. Thomas Aquinas defeated Dowling in the East Region final.