‘Mr. June’ sends Tar Heels to Super RegionalUNC advances after Stubbs drives in game-winning run in bottom of 13th
CHAPEL HILL — If Reggie Jackson is “Mr. October” and Derek Jeter is “Mr. November,” then University of North Carolina senior first baseman Cody Stubbs, a former Tuscola High School standout, has to be “Mr. June.”
In an epic college baseball postseason battle, Stubbs singled with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 13th inning to help No. 1 overall seed North Carolina avoid a huge upset by edging Florida Atlantic, 12-11, at Boshamer Stadium in a wild NCAA Chapel Hill Regional championship game Monday night.
Stubbs drilled a knee-high, outside fastball down the left-field line, driving in Landon Lassiter from third to cap a game filled with incredible momentum swings, sending the Tar Heels (55-9) spilling onto the field in a mad dash to celebrate.
UNC took a 6-2 lead into the ninth inning, but gave up six runs — including a grand slam by Tyler Rocklein — to trail 8-6. But the Tar Heels tied it to send it to extras, only to fall behind again in the 12th after the second-seeded Owls (42-22) got a three-run homer by Levi Meyer in the top of the inning.
The walk-off single wasn’t the only clutch hit the former Mountaineer slugger had in the Chapel Hill Regional championship game. He drilled a one-hop double off the left center field wall for a stand up double to spark the two-run ninth inning comeback to tie the game at eight.
It stayed tied until catcher Levi Meyer belted a three-run homer in the top of the 12th to put the Owls ahead, 11-8.
But the Tar Heels rallied for three runs to tie the game at 11 going in the 13th frame. Stubbs negotiated a bases loaded walk to drive in the first run, But three batters later, he was thrown out at the plate to end the inning trying to score the game-winning run on Mike Zolk’s single to left.
In their final at bat, the Tar Heels loaded the bases for Stubbs when Landon Lassiter lined a one-out single, Colin Moran walked and Brian Holberton got hit by a pitch.
Stubbs drilled a 1-2 fastball that dropped just inside the left field line to ignite the celebration. He was 4-for-7 (24th double) with two RBI and three runs scored to raise his team-leading batting average to .371.
North Carolina advances to host the best-of-three Super Regional against South Carolina, beginning with Game One Friday at Boshamer Stadium in Chapel Hill.