EASLEY—Indiana pitcher Matt Kaplanis pitched a one-hitter as the Central Region champion used another stellar pitching performance en route to a 3-1 victory over Florida, the Southeast Region champion Thursday afternoon at the Big League World Series at the JB “Red” Owens Recreation Complex.
Kaplanis and Will Coursen-Carr (winning pitcher in 1-0 victory over host Easley Wednesday) have allowed one run and three hits in 14 innings so far in the series. Kaplanis walked two and struck out eight.
Kaplanis gave up a lead-off home run to TJ Glessner in the first inning, which turned out to be Florida’s only hit of the game. He retired 20 of the last 21 Florida batters including the last 11 hitters.
Glessner’s home run gave Florida the lead until the top of the fourth inning when Tyler Herbste and Andre Jernigan hit back-to-back singles to open the inning for the Central Region champion. Steve Remesnik walked to load the bases for Indiana. Austin Plasterer hit a one-out single scoring Herbste and Jernigan and give Indiana a 2-1 lead. Brian Urschel, the pinch runner for Remesnik, later scored in the inning to make it 3-1.
Florida’s only baserunner in the last six innings was Carter Cashman who walked with one out in the fifth inning and got into scoring position with a stolen base. Kaplanis struck out the last two batters to leave Cashman stranded on base.
Indiana threatened in the fifth inning when Evan VanSumeren led off with a double and then reached third on a passed ball. Brad Miller came in to relieve Florida starting pitcher Colyn O’Connell and retired the last two batters to end the threat.
Indiana, now 2-0 in US Pool Play, takes on California, the champion of the West Region at 4 p.m. Friday. It will be the third game in three days for the Central champion. Florida, 0-1, faces Southwest Region champion, Texas, 0-1, at 7:30 p.m. Friday.