OMAHA BOUND!

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. --- North Carolina battled from behind once again to advance past South Carolina in the Super Regional final on Sunday, and move on to the College World Series in Omaha. The Tar Heels defeated the Gamecocks, 9-4, in the last game ever played at the current Boshamer Stadium.

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    The Tar Heels (53-13) return to their sixth College World Series and second straight for the first time in program history.

    "It's just such an emotion right now – the adrenaline," Reid Fronk said. "We just wanted another chance. I've been telling guys that I'm just trying to get back to that ‘Promised Land.'

    "That's Omaha to us, and now that we have that opportunity, I think we're going to relax and enjoy it, and give everybody out there our best shot for sure."

    UNC will face Mississippi State in the opening round of the College World Series on Friday – time to be announced.

    Carolina is the first ACC team to make consecutive trips to CWS since Florida State accomplished the feat in 1999 and 2000.

    The Gamecocks (46-20) suffered just their third defeat to Carolina in 11 meetings.

    "They are an outstanding team," USC coach Ray Tanner said of the Tar Heels. "It was a great game for a long time tonight, and they were certainly the better team. I am proud of our effort, but we got beat by a better team in the Super Regional."

    Chad Flack's go-ahead two-run home run in the seventh was the Tar Heels' first since May 19 at Maryland, snapping a nine-game homer-less stretch which spanned 390 at-bats.

    "He left a changeup up over the plate," Flack said. "I was just lucky to make good contact with it, and I was looking for just a base hit right there to keep the rally. Luckily got a hold of it a little better."

    UNC trailed 4-1 after four innings before scoring three in the sixth to tie things up. The Tar Heels then went up for good in the seventh on Flack's two-run homer.

    UNC had been down by two or more runs in four of its five NCAA Tournament wins, including both victories over South Carolina.

    All-America reliever Andrew Carignan matched a career-high with four innings pitched and throwing a career-high 69 pitches. He allowed just one hit and three walks.

    "He's our horse and we were going to ride him just as far as we could," Fox said. "We had a couple guys ready, but Andrew Carignan was the guy we wanted out there."

    Rob Wooten pitched in his sixth straight NCAA game and his 41st of the season, working 1 2/3 scoreless innings.

    "Our bullpen was terrific today," Fox said.


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