Virginia 5, Arkansas 3

Virginia pitching turned up the heat over the last three innings to outlast Arkanas, 5-3, in the opening game of the College World Series on Saturday at TD Ameritrade Park. This story is free courtesy Northwest Arkansas Honda Dealers. Click the banner to learn more.



OMAHA, Neb. -- If Arkansas is to make a run at the College World Series, it will have to do it from the loser's bracket.

The Razorbacks lost 5-3 to Virginia on Saturday at TD Ameritrade Park. Arkansas will play in an elimination game Monday afternoon against either Florida or Miami.

Virginia third baseman Kenny Towns hit a two-out double in the top of the eighth inning to give the Cavaliers the go-ahead run. Virginia added an insurance run on Ernie Clement's two-out single in the top of the ninth.

The Cavaliers (40-22) scored all five of its runs with two outs in an inning. Arkansas had base runners in eight innings, but the Razorbacks hit into three double plays and stranded six runners.

Arkansas (40-24) had a chance to tie the game in the eighth inning, but Andrew Benintendi was stranded after drawing a leadoff walk and stealing second base. Brett McAfee led off the ninth inning with a single, but Michael Bernal followed by hitting into his second double play of the game.

Virginia closer Josh Sborz shut down the Razorbacks in three scoreless innings. The right-hander struck out five batters and allowed only one hit.

After Virginia took a 3-2 lead on a pair of two-out hits by Daniel Pinero and Matt Thais in the top of the fifth inning, Arkansas tied the game on Benintendi's solo home run in the bottom of the inning.

The home run was Benintendi's 20th, which moved him into the national lead in the category. He became the first college player since 2009 to record 20 home runs in a season in which he also stole at least 20 bases.

Benintendi tied the game on a sacrifice fly in the third inning and Clark Eagan added an RBI double to give Arkansas a 2-1 lead. Virginia had led 1-0 after Joe McCarthy's second inning home run.

Pitching in perhaps his final game, junior Trey Killian suffered a loss in a long outing for the Razorbacks. Killian pitched 7 1/3 innings, allowing four runs on seven hits. Killian also struck out six batters.

Zach Jackson pitched 1 2/3 innings in relief for Arkansas, allowing one run on three hits.

Connor Jones pitched six innings for the Cavaliers. Jones gave up all three runs on six hits.



Virginia was aggressive running against the Razorbacks. The Cavaliers were successful in five of eight stolen base attempts.

Pinero had three stolen bases, becoming the first player to accomplish the feat at the College World Series since 2004.

Virginia, last year's national runner-up, has defeated Arkansas three consecutive times. The Cavaliers beat the Razorbacks twice last season in an NCAA regional.

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