BLACKSBURG, Va. – Hector Lorenzana had two hits and three RBIs to help Oklahoma capture the NCAA Blacksburg regional title with a 10-4 win over Virginia Tech at English Field on Sunday evening.
The Sooners (43-19) advanced to next week’s super regional to face LSU. Virginia Tech (40-22) saw its season end.
“People are going to see that score and not realize what a difficult task it was for the Oklahoma Sooners to get through this regional,” Oklahoma coach Sunny Golloway said. “We were challenged, and to come out of this as the champions really prepares us to move on.”
Oklahoma rallied from a 2-0 deficit by scoring four runs on five hits in the sixth inning and took advantage of two Virginia Tech errors. Then the Sooners put the game away with a six-run ninth inning against Virginia Tech reliever Jake Joyce.
Virginia Tech got on the board first, scoring a run in the bottom of the second on an RBI single to center by designated hitter Ryan Burns. The Hokies took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth inning. With one out, Andrew Rash hit an opposite field solo homer to right, his 11th homer of the season.
But Oklahoma got to Virginia Tech starting pitcher Eddie Campbell in the fifth inning. Max White and Lorenzana had RBI singles in the inning and the two Hokie errors led to two unearned runs, as the Sooners grabbed a 4-2 lead.
The Hokies got a run in the bottom half of the sixth when Tyler Horan scored on a single by Chad Morgan, but Rash tried to score as well and was thrown out by White, Oklahoma’s centerfielder, to preserve the Sooners’ lead.
“I thought it (the throw) was going to sail on me a little bit, but it ended up getting in there,” White said. “They had two guys in scoring position and we needed to keep the momentum. I didn’t want them tying it up, and that run would have tied it up. I saw the ball come up the middle, and I charged hard and luckily it was on line.”
In the ninth, the Sooners scored six runs, including two on a single by Jack Mayfield and two on a double by Lorenzana. Another Virginia Tech error – one of four on the night – did not help matters.
“If you don’t play clean baseball on a Tuesday or in a regional final, you’re not going to win a game,” Virginia Tech coach Pete Hughes said. “Credit Oklahoma. They played clean. We didn’t execute a hit and run, and they executed a hit and run. For the most part, they made the routine plays, and we had trouble doing that tonight.”
Mayfield finished 3-for-5 with two RBIs for the Sooners, while Lorenzana was 2-for-3. Garrett Carey was 2-for-4 with an RBI.
Rash and Morgan both went 2-for-4 with an RBI for Virginia Tech.
Jake Fisher (3-2) got the win, giving up three runs on seven hits in 5.1 innings. Eddie Campbell (2-5) took the loss for Virginia Tech despite giving up just two earned runs in 5.2 innings.