LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Nick Solak’s two-run homer in the top of the fifth inning propelled Louisville to a 7-4 win over Kennesaw State on Saturday night, sending the Cardinals to their second consecutive College World Series and third in school history.
The Cardinals (50-15) have appeared in the College World Series three times since coach Dan McDonnell was hired in 2007. Before his arrival in Louisville, the Cardinals had never won a game in the NCAA Tournament.
Kennesaw State catcher Max Pentecost, the 11th pick in the Major League Baseball first-year player draft, gave the Owls a lead with a bases-loaded, two-run double in the bottom of the third.
Through three innings, the Owls (40-24) led 4-2.
But Louisville’s Cole Sturgeon singled in a run with one out in the fifth, and he was on first when Solak’s shot cleared the fence.
TEXAS 4, HOUSTON 0
In Austin, Texas, C.J Hinojosa drove in two runs and Parker French pitched six scoreless innings as Texas (43-19) beat Houston (48-18) to win an NCAA super regional and advance to the College World Series.
Texas is headed to Omaha for the 35th time, more than any other school, after missing the NCAA Tournament altogether the previous two years.
The Longhorns’ last trip to the CWS was in 2011.
MARYLAND 5, VIRGINIA 4
In Charlottesville, Va., Jake Stinnett pitched six solid innings, Brandon Lowe had two RBI and Maryland (40-21) beat Virginia (47-14) in the opener of their NCAA super regional.
In a matchup of All-ACC pitchers, Stinnett (8-6) outworked Virginia’s Nathan Kirby by scattering three runs and six hits to lead Maryland.
TEXAS TECH 1, COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON 0
In Lubbock, Texas, Chris Sadberry struck out a career-high eight, and Texas Tech (44-19) held off the College of Charleston 1-0 in the opener of a super regional.
STANFORD 5, VANDERBILT 4
In Nashville, Tenn., Wayne Taylor hit a game-ending home run in the ninth inning, lifting Stanford (35-25) over Vanderbilt (45-19) and forcing a deciding third game in their super regional.
TEXAS CHRISTIAN 3, PEPPERDINE 2
In Fort Worth, Texas, Derek Odell had a two-run single, ace Brandon Finnegan took a shutout into the seventh inning and Texas Christian beat Pepperdine in the first super regional game at home for the Horned Frogs.
LOUISIANA-LAFAYETTE 9, MISSISSIPPI 5
In Lafayette, La., Tyler Girouard and Dyland Butler homered to lift Louisiana-Lafayette to a win over Mississippi in the opener of the super regional.