Staff, wire reports
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. —
The super regional NCAA tournament game between Virginia and Mississippi State was delayed twice by rain on Sunday.
The Bulldogs held a 5-3 lead in the seventh inning when rain returned to Davenport Field. A win by Mississippi State would end the series and send the Bulldogs to the College World Series. Virginia was seeking to force a third game tonight in Charlottesville.
Sophomores stood out for both squads on Sunday. Brandon Downes gave Virginia a 1-0 lead with a solo home run in the second inning, his 10th homer. In the sixth, Nate Irving hit a two-run double to left to trim the deficit to 5-3.
In between, the Bulldogs scored five unanswered runs. Wes Rea broke a 1-1 tie in the third with a two-run home run to left field.
Virginia senior Scott Silverstein started the game and in 3 1/3 innings of work gave up seven hits and five runs, four earned. He walked three batters.
South Carolina 8, North Carolina 0
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — Jordan Montgomery pitched a four-hit shutout, leading South Carolina past North Carolina in the NCAA super regionals for the Tar Heels’ most lopsided loss this year.
Joey Pankake drove in two runs during a five-run second inning for the Gamecocks (43-19), who forced a decisive game Monday in the best-of-3 series with the winner going to the College World Series.
The Tar Heels (56-10) won Saturday’s opener 6-5 on an RBI single in the ninth. But the No. 1 overall seed in the tournament took its first shutout loss in 96 games dating to last season and its four hits matched a season low. Before Sunday, North Carolina’s worst loss was a 10-4 home defeat to No. 6 national seed Virginia on May 16.
South Carolina is trying to get back to Omaha for the fourth straight year.
The Tar Heels started the year 39-2, won the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament title and haven’t lost consecutive games all year.
Hobbs Johnson (4-1) turned in the shortest outing of his career by managing just five outs before heading to the dugout in the second.
By then, Tanner English — who also had three stolen bases and a diving catch in center field in the ninth — had driven in the game’s first run on a bunt. Then Pankake drove in two more on a double down the left-field line and L.B. Dantzler followed with a two-run single to right for a 5-0 lead.
Montgomery (6-1) didn’t let a UNC base runner reach third all day. He threw 121 pitches and struck out three while walking just one, dominating a lineup that had produced the most runs in the nation (8.1 per game) entering the super regionals. It was his first complete game.
Florida State 6
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Sam Travis hit a tiebreaking two-run homer to help Indiana reach the College World Series for the first time in school history.
The Hoosiers (48-14) played with plenty of poise on the road in their first super regional, sweeping the Seminoles.
Will Coursen-Carr (5-0) pitched four innings of relief for Indiana, allowing just one earned run. Coursen-Carr earned the win in the Big Ten tournament final, regional title game and super regional clincher.
After Florida State (47-17) scored three runs in the top of the fifth to tie the game 5-5, Travis gave the Hoosiers the lead for good in the bottom of the inning.
Scott Sitz (10-2) allowed seven runs, six of them earned, in 4 1-3 innings.
Louisville 2, Vanderbilt 1
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Jeff Thompson surrendered one run in seven strong innings to make Louisville’s two early runs stand up, sending the Cardinals to the College World Series for the second time.
The Big East Conference pitcher of the year struck out nine, allowed three hits and threw 124 pitches. Zak Wasserman and Sutton Whiting drove in runs in the second inning for the Cardinals (51-12).
Vanderbilt freshman Zander Wiel homered in the sixth inning to account for the only extra-base hit of the series. The Commo-dores (54-12), seeded No. 2 overall, stranded 11 runners.