Saturday’s super regional roundup: North Carolina advances to CWS for first time since 2013

Saturday’s super regional roundup: North Carolina advances to CWS for first time since 2013
North Carolina players celebrate with Ike Freeman, second from left, after he scored in the first inning. The Tar Heels swept Stetson in their super regional to earn a spot in the College World Series for the first time since 2013. (The Associated Press)

North Carolina became the first team to advance to the College World Series, completing a sweep of its best-of-three NCAA tournament super regional against Stetson on Saturday.

The No. 6 national seed Tar Heels scored four runs in the first inning and hung on to win 7-5 over the No. 11 Hatters. Carolina will make its first CWS trip since 2013.

Cal State Fullerton beat Washington 5-2 to even its series at a game apiece. No. 14 Minnesota played at No. 3 Oregon State and Mississippi State met Vanderbilt in late Game 2s.

In super regional openers, defending national champion and No. 1 overall seed Florida beat Auburn and top draft pick Casey Mize 8-2; Tennessee Tech closer Ethan Roberts held No. 13 Texas to one run in four innings in a 5-4 win; Big 12 freshman of the year Gabe Holt drove in the go-ahead run in the eighth inning to lead No. 9 Texas Tech past Duke 6-4; and Carson Shaddy drove in four runs as Arkansas defeated South Carolina 9-3.

North Carolina, playing at home in Chapel Hill, survived ninth-inning drama for the second straight day to secure its seventh CWS berth and 11th overall. With runners on first and third with two outs and the go-ahead run at the plate, Stetson’s Brooks Wilson sent a high fly to center field that Brandon Riley caught at the warning track for the final out. On Friday, with Stetson down three runs, the game ended when Wilson flew out to the wall in left with the bases loaded.

Tommy Wilson held Washington to one run and three hits over seven innings in Fullerton, California. The Titans took a 4-1 lead in the fifth when Daniel Cope doubled and scored on Jairus Richards’ triple and Richards scored on Brett Borgogno’s RBI single. Joe Wainhouse homered twice for the Huskies.

Wil Dalton drove in two runs and Deacon Liput homered for the second time in three games in Gainesville, Florida, putting the Gators within a win of their fourth straight CWS. Brady Singer, matched against his fellow first-round draft pick in Mize, struck out nine and limited Auburn to two runs and four hits in 6⅔ innings.

In Austin, Chase Chambers and David Garza doubled to drive in Tennessee Tech’s three runs in the fifth inning for a 5-3 lead, and Roberts retired the last six Texas batters after a sacrifice fly made it a one-run game in the seventh. The Golden Eagles are one win away from their first CWS after having never advanced past regionals previously.

Texas Tech, looking to go to the CWS for the third time since 2014, went to reliever Ty Harpenau after it took the lead in the eighth in Lubbock, Texas. Duke had two runners on base in the ninth before Harpenau induced a game-ending double play.

CHAPEL HILL

Saturday

North Carolina 7, Stetson 5: North Carolina jumped out in front with a four-run first inning and the Tar Heels clinched their first trip to the College World Series since 2013. Cody Roberts, Brandon Riley and Ashton McGee had RBI doubles in that first inning for the host Tar Heels, the No. 6 national seed. Reliever Caden O’Brien earned the win, while UNC finished with 14 hits. Jonathan Meola and Andrew MacNeil each hit solo home runs for Stetson, the No. 11 national seed.

NASHVILLE

Saturday

Vanderbilt 4, Mississippi State 3

Sunday

Vanderbilt vs. Mississippi State, 5 p.m.

CORVALLIS

Saturday

Oregon State 6, Minnesota 3

FULLERTON

Saturday

Cal State Fullerton 5, Washington 2: Tommy Wilson pitched seven strong innings to help the Titans force a winner-take-all Game 3. Wilson limited the Huskies to one run and three hits. Brett Conine pitched the eighth and ninth innings to secure the victory. The Titans will advance to their 19th College World Series with a victory. Last season Fullerton lost its opening super-regional game to Long Beach State before winning the next two to reach the CWS. Fullerton took a 2-0 lead in the second inning. Sahid Valenzuela led off with a triple to right center and scored on Jake Pavletich’s RBI double down the right field line. Pavletich scored later in the inning on a fielder’s choice. Joe Wainhouse drilled two homers for the Huskies and has 13 home runs in his last 16 games.

Sunday

Cal State Fullerton vs. Washington, 8 p.m.

GAINESVILLE

Saturday

Florida 8, Auburn 2: Wil Dalton drove in two runs, Deacon Liput homered and top-seeded Florida roughed up No. 1 draft pick Casey Mize. The defending national champion Gators are one victory away from returning to the College World Series for the fourth consecutive year. Mize gave up six earned runs on seven hits, walked a career-high four and hit a batter. He lasted just five innings and lost his fourth straight start against SEC opponents. Florida’s Brady Singer, the SEC pitcher of the year, allowed four hits and two earned runs in 6⅔ innings. He struck out nine and walked two.

Sunday

Florida vs. Auburn, 11 a.m.

Monday

x-Florida vs. Auburn, 7:30 p.m.

FAYETTEVILLE

Saturday

Arkansas 9, South Carolina 3: Carson Shaddy drove in four runs, including a three-run double in the seventh inning for the Razorbacks. Shaddy’s double hit off the top of the fence in left center field and cleared the bases for Arkansas to make it 7-3. Shaddy later scored on a Jared Gates sacrifice fly to make it 8-3 before the end of the seventh and Luke Bonfield’s single scored Heston Kjerstad to cap the Razorbacks’ scoring in the bottom of the eighth. LT Tolbert and Madison Stokes each had home runs for the Gamecocks. Blaine Knight gave up three runs in six innings for Arkansas, which improved to 34-3 at home this season.

Sunday

Arkansas vs. South Carolina, 2 p.m.

Monday

x-Arkansas vs. South Carolina, 6 p.m.

LUBBOCK

Saturday

Texas Tech 6, Duke 4: Gabe Holt went 3 for 5 and drove in the go-ahead run in the eighth inning for the Red Raiders, the No. 9 national seed. Holt’s single to right field scored Cody Farhat and, four pitches later, Brian Klein’s RBI double gave Texas Tech a 6-4 lead going into the ninth. Duke took a 3-0 lead in the top of the fifth, but Holt singled and Klein walked before Grant Little hit a two-out, two-RBI double in the bottom of the inning and Holt’s bases-loaded fielder’s choice scored Cameron Warren to make it 3-all in the sixth. Zack Kone finished 3 for 4 with two doubles and three RBIs for Duke.

Sunday

Texas Tech vs. Duke, 5 p.m.

Monday

x-Texas Tech vs. Duke, 3 p.m.

AUSTIN

Saturday

Tennessee Tech 5, Texas 4: Chase Chambers and David Garza each had an RBI double to power a three-run fifth inning and Tennessee Tech held on to get a road win. Chambers’ double in the top of the fifth drove in two runs to make it 4-3 and then Garza brought in Chambers with another double. Ethan Roberts pitched the final four innings to notch his 15th save, giving up one run on David Hamilton’s sacrifice fly in the seventh inning. Kody Clemens hit his 22nd homer of the season for the Longhorns, who are the No. 13 national seed.

Sunday

Texas vs. Tennessee Tech, 2 p.m.

Monday

x-Texas vs. Tennessee Tech, noon.

x-if necessary

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