Helms helps Louisville top Vanderbilt

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Matt Helms delivered a two-out, two-run pinch-hit single to lead Louisville to a 5-3 victory over No. 2 overall seed Vanderbilt in a NCAA super regional opener Saturday.

Defiance graduate Dace Kime (6-1), Cody Ege and Nick Burdi allowed just one hit and one unearned run in the final four innings. At one point, Louisville retired 12 of 13 Vanderbilt batters.

Helms had driven in only three runs all season. But with the bases loaded in the seventh, the senior stepped in and hit a 1-2 pitch from Vanderbilt closer Brian Miller down the third-base line.

The Cardinals (50-12) tied the game just three batters earlier. Zak Wasserman drove in his second run of the game with a two-out single. Louisville strung together three two-out hits and tagged Vanderbilt starter Kevin Ziomek (11-3) for three runs in the inning.

Xavier Turner had two hits and scored two runs for the Commodores (54-11). Six of Vanderbilt's seven hits came in the opening three innings.

Louisville, playing in its first super regional since 2009, tied a program-record for regular-season wins.

The Cardinals are one win away from reaching their second College World Series and first since 2007.

Ziomek allowed just two hits in his first six innings and retired 11 of 12 entering the seventh. Then the left-hander ran into trouble.

Trailing 2-1, Jeff Gardner led off with a single and moved to third on two groundouts. Ziomek then surrendered two straight singles to left field and walked leadoff hitter Adam Engel to load the bases.

In came Helms for his first at-bat since May 23. The left-handed hitter was pinch-hitting for second baseman Zach Lucas, who took over for injured Nick Ratajczak in the fourth inning.

He was the first batter for right-hander Miller, Vanderbilt's single-season saves leader with 16. Miller quickly threw two strikes. But on the fourth pitch, Helms poked a hit past Turner at third for the third opposite field hit of the inning.

After Chad Green scattered six hits and allowed two runs in five innings, the Cardinals turned to three relievers.

Burdi picked up his 16th save by inducing Conrad Gregor into a game-ending groundout to second with the bases loaded.

INDIANA 10, FLORIDA ST. 9

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Kyle Schwarber had a go-ahead two-run single in a four-run seventh inning and Indiana went on to beat Florida State in the first game of the Tallahassee Super Regional.

Schwarber, who also had a two-run homer in the fourth, put Indiana up 7-6 with his hit in the seventh.

Indiana (47-14) can advance to its first College World Series with a win on Sunday. If the Seminoles (47-16) win, a deciding game would be played Monday.

The Hoosiers' big inning came against relievers Gage Smith (4-2) and Billy Strode, who gave up just three hits in the inning but the Seminoles committed two throwing errors.

John Nogowski's two-run homer in the eighth trimmed Indiana's lead to 10-8. DJ Stewart added an RBI single in the ninth, but Indiana's Will Coursen-Carr induced a pair of flyouts to end the game.

N. CAROLINA 6, S. CAROLINA 5

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- Freshman Skye Bolt hit a game-winning RBI single through the right side in the ninth inning to lift North Carolina past South Carolina in the opener of the NCAA super regional best-of-3 series.

Bolt's two-out hit scored Parks Jordan from second for the Tar Heels (56-9), putting them within a win of reaching the College World Series for the sixth time in eight seasons. It was yet another close win for the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA tournament as North Carolina shook off a shaky start from top pitcher Kent Emanuel and an early two-run deficit.

Reliever Trent Thornton (10-1) earned the win, allowing one run in three innings. Tyler Webb (3-3) took the loss for the Gamecocks (42-19).

The Tar Heels reached the super regionals with a 12-11, 13-inning win against Florida Atlantic on Monday night.

MISSISSIPPI ST. 11, VIRGINIA 6

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- Adam Frazier went 6 for 6, Hunter Renfroe was 4 for 5 and they each drove in three runs to help Mississippi State beat Virginia in the first game of the Charlottesville super regional.

The Bulldogs (47-18) pounded Virginia pitching for 20 hits and benefited from uncharachteristic sloppiness by the Cavaliers, who made four errors that led to six unearned runs.

Virginia (50-11) had 11 hits, but also hit into four rally-killing double plays.

Kendall Graveman (7-5) went 51/3 innings for the Bulldogs, allowing nine hits and all six runs, just four of them earned. He struck out three and walked two. Ross Mitchell finished, allowing just two hits and three walks in 32/3 innings.

N.C. STATE 4, RICE 3

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Jake Fincher's two-out single in the bottom of the ninth capped a rally and lifted N.C. State to a victory over Rice in Game 1 of the Raleigh Super Regional.

Rice (44-19) had taken a 3-2 lead in the top of the ninth, but N.C. State (48-14) tied it when Brett Williams slid under a tag after a bunt by Logan Ratledge. Williams singled to start the inning, stole second, and went to third on an error by pitcher Zech Lemond.

Two batters later, Fincher's single to left scored Jake Armstrong with the winning run.

Christian Stringer had doubled in the go-ahead run for Rice, pulling a ball down the left-field line to score pinch-runner John Williamson. Hunter Kopycinski had three hits, including the one that put Williamson on base.

KANSAS ST. 6, OREGON ST. 2

CORVALLIS, Ore. -- Tanner Witt's two-run single in the 10th inning capped a four-run rally and Kansas State beat Oregon State in the opening game of the Corvallis super regional.

The Wildcats (45-17) had seven hits over the final two innings and sent nine batters to the plate in the 10th. They pulled ahead when Jared King led off the inning with a bloop double into shallow left-center field and Jon Davis brought him home with an RBI single. Two batters later, pinch hitter Mitch Meyer knocked a bases-loaded RBI single, and Witt broke the game open with a two-run single into right field.

LSU 11, OKLAHOMA 1

BATON ROUGE, La. -- JaCoby Jones had four hits, including a homer, and drove in two runs to help LSU beat Oklahoma to advance to the College World Series for the 16th time.

LSU (57-9), which tied a single-season school record for victories, used four pitchers, who combined to limit the Sooners (43-21) to five hits and prevented Oklahoma from scoring after it had taken its only lead of the series, 1-0, in the bottom of the first inning.

Will LaMarche (3-0) got the win for the Tigers, who improved to 5-0 in the NCAA tournament.

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