UVa Moves Past Arkansas

Virginia baseball beats Arkansas 5-3 after another late game rally. The Cavaliers will now face the winner of Miami-Florida on Monday night.

Kenny Towns hit a tiebreaking RBI double in the eighth inning after Daniel Pinero stole second and third base, and Virginia opened the College World Series with a 5-3 victory over Arkansas on Saturday.

The Cavaliers (40-22), the 2014 national runners-up, will play Monday against the winner of a late Bracket 1 game between Miami and Florida. The Razorbacks (40-24) will meet the loser of that game Monday.

Arkansas tied it at 3 in the fifth on Andrew Benintendi's nation-leading 20th home run. That was the second homer of the game at TD Ameritrade Park, which surrendered only three each of the past two years in the CWS. Virginia's Joe McCarthy had opened the scoring with a drive into the right-field seats in the second.

The Hogs got a solid start from Trey Killian (3-5), a ninth-round draft pick of the Colorado Rockies who left with one out in the eighth after Pinero singled for his third hit. Zack Jackson came on, and Pinero stole second and third on back-to-back pitches. Pinero came home when Towns drove a ball into the right-field corner.

Ernie Clement added an RBI single in the ninth, and Virginia scored all five of its runs with two outs.

Pinero, who arrived in Omaha with six steals for the season, had three of the Cavaliers' season high-tying five steals against the Hogs.

Virginia starter Connor Jones made it through six innings despite struggling with his command. He allowed six hits, walked two and hit two batters.

Josh Sborz (5-2), who started two CWS games last year and is now the Cavaliers' closer, struck out five of his 10 batters in three innings.

The main story line coming into the CWS was how the new flat-seam baseball would perform at the spacious stadium. McCarthy, the 12th batter of the game, took Killian deep into the right-field seats. Last year it took 671 batters before a ball left the park.

Benintendi's homer in the fifth was his second at the stadium. The No. 7 overall draft pick by the Boston Red Sox also knocked a ball out May 12 against Creighton.

Virginia, a No. 3 regional seed and the lowest seed to make it to Omaha, improved to 6-0 in the NCAA Tournament.



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