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Oklahoma Edges Virginia To Stay Alive

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Oklahoma took a big lead early, but had to hold off a late-game push from UVA to keep their National Championship hopes alive (AP Photo).. Oklahoma took a big lead early, but had to hold off a late-game push from UVA to keep their National Championship hopes alive (AP Photo)..
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Virginia -

Oklahoma jumped out to an early lead thanks to the pitching of sophomore Dillon Overton, but had to hold off a late push from the Virginia Cavaliers to win 5-4 and advance to the Charlottesville Regional Final.

The Sooners jumped out to an early lead thanks to the bat of Matt Oberste, hitting a leadoff dinger in the bottom of the third to give OU a 1-0 lead.

Oklahoma continued to add to its lead in the bottom of the fourth, capitalizing on several miscues from the Cavaliers. Evan Mistich reached on a fielding error in the first at-bat of the inning, followed by a walk and a hit-by-pitch to load the bases with no outs on the board. Jack Mayfield tripled to center field in the next at-bat to score all three to take a four-run lead and end the game for UVA starter Shane Halley.

The senior pitcher finished the game after getting credit for three innings, giving up three earned runs on three hits and striking out four in the process.

However, Oklahoma added another insurance run in the bottom of the seventh on a Caleb Bushyhead RBI single, scoring Eric Ross from third to take a 5-1 advantage into the final two innings.

Overton pitched 8.1 innings for the Sooners, allowing just two earned runs on seven hits, striking out 11 batters in the process. His first earned run came in the top of the fifth on a Chris Taylor double to right center, taking a 4-1 lead. In the top of the ninth, Overton gave up an RBI single to Keith Werman, cutting the Sooners' lead to 5-2, ending the day for Overton and bringing in Kindle Ladd.

Ladd struggled, giving up a single to put runners on second and third and giving up a two-run double Stephen Bruno, cutting Oklahoma's lead to just one run. However, Derek Fisher was thrown out at first in the next at-bat ending the game.

Shane Halley picked up a loss for his work, giving up three earned runs on three hits in his three innings of service.

Oklahoma will take on Appalachian State at 3 p.m. Monday, needing to win back-to-back games over the Mountaineers to advance out of the regional.

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