CHAPELL HILL, NC ( Associated Press) — Peyton Stovall hit a three-run fifth inning with a lead-off home run, Conor Noland threw 6 2/3 shutout innings as Arkansas beat No. 10 overall seed, North Carolina, 4-1 Gave. Round of Chapel Hill Super Regionals on Saturday.
Arkansas (42-19) and North Carolina (42-21), both making their 10th Super Regional appearance, will play again on Sunday. A Razorbacks win would send them into the 11th College World Series in search of their first title. A victory for the Tar Heels will force a winner-take-all game on Monday. For the first time in 33 years both the schools are playing.
The Razorbacks took the lead for good at the top of fifth. Stovall hit the first pitch in the right-central zone for his ninth home run of the season. Zack went to Gregory, Braydon Webb sang the song and both runners went up a base on a wild pitch by UNC starter Max Carlson (4-3). Slevens sings in the center to drive in Gregory and Evan Wallace and then follows with a sacrificial fly at Plate Web.
Gregory walked in and made it 4–0 in the seventh after scoring a single by Slavens. Vance Honeycutt drove the race alone for the Tar Heels with a single home run in the bottom of the eighth.
Noland (4-2) made six hits and a walk, which hit a six. Hagen Smith scored the ninth for his second defense.
North Carolina has been a super regional in three of the last four seasons. The Tar Heels have made 11 CWS appearances but never won it. He was runner-up in 2006 and 2007. The Razorbacks have also never won the title, finishing second in 1979 and 2018. UNC and Arkansas only played for the second time in 1989 CWS – a 7-3 win by the Razorbacks.
The Razorbacks are the only team to have four straight Super Regional berths. Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn has led the Hogs to 18 postseason performances in his 20 seasons. There are nine super regional berths under Van Horn.