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Post Diamond Dawgs headed to Tallahassee

Monday May 25, 2009

After learning that Georgia wouldn’t host a regional in this year’s NCAA baseball tournament, the only question was the destination. Georgia will be the #2 seed in the Tallahassee regional hosted of course by #1 seed FSU. #4 seed Marist and #3 seed Ohio State are the other teams taking part in the regional. Georgia will open play against Ohio State at noon on Friday (ESPNU).

If the Dawgs emerge from the Tallahassee Regional, the bracket has them playing the winner of the Oklahoma regional (hosted by the Sooners if they win their regional).

Georgia and FSU have played twice this decade in the postseason. FSU was sent to Athens for the 2006 regionals. The Seminoles beat Georgia 6-4 in a winner’s bracket game, and Georgia had to win two straight over the ‘Noles to advance. Georgia handled FSU 7-1 in the second game the Bulldogs played on Sunday, and they wrapped up the regional with a tight 3-2 win on Monday night thanks in part to a great pitching performance by Trevor Holder.

The most infamous series between the two teams was the 2001 Super Regional in Athens. Georgia advanced to their first College World Series since the 1990 title season, but the big story of the weekend was the arrival of Kudzu Hill and the Georgia crowd as a real advantage for the Diamond Dawgs. FSU coach Mike Martin commented,

”Georgia deserved to win. They played outstanding. The atmosphere was unbelievable. This environment was as tough as I’ve seen in 22 years of coaching. We don’t ever want to come here again.”

Georgia’s homefield advantage came through over the Noles again in 2006, but they’ll need to find their own motivation heading into a tough place to play at Tallahassee. The Seminoles were the top seed of the ACC tournament last week, but they fell to Virginia in the championship game, possibly costing the ‘Noles a national seed. FSU was 42-16 on the year and ranked #12 by Baseball America entering the postseason.

The Dawgs split a pair of games in Tallahassee in 2008.

The Dawgs weren’t one of the top eight national seeds of course, but the SEC is still well-represented among the national seeds:

  1. Texas
  2. Cal State Fullerton
  3. LSU
  4. North Carolina
  5. Arizona State
  6. UC Irvine
  7. Oklahoma
  8. Florida

Eight SEC teams received bids: LSU, Florida, Ole Miss, Alabama, South Carolina, Georgia, Arkansas, and Vanderbilt.

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