Men's College World Series Day 5: Florida State fends off Vance Honeycutt, North Carolina to reach semifinals

Florida State is headed to the semifinals in Omaha.

The Seminoles held on late Tuesday to beat North Carolina 9-5 at Charles Schwab Field and keep their Men's College World Series run alive. FSU's victory officially eliminated the Tar Heels from the tournament.

The battle was the only one of the day Tuesday, as the night game was postponed due to incoming weather.

It didn’t make a difference in the end, but Vance Honeycutt hit yet another home run for North Carolina.

The Tar Heels star drilled a three-run shot well into left field in the fifth inning to keep his squad in it late. It was his sixth home run this postseason, the most of anyone in the field, and his fourth in his past five games. He’s responsible for more than one-third of the runs UNC scored.

He didn’t last long on the mound, but Matthew Mathijs pulled off an incredible pitch Tuesday. Mathijs, despite a massive gust of wind whipping through the park and throwing his hat off his head mid-pitch, managed to deliver the toss without balking.

In fact, he didn’t even flinch. Just watch:

That, however, came amid a two-run inning for the Seminoles. After loading the bases, Florida State scored one when Jaime Ferrer walked, and then Daniel Cantu hit a sacrifice fly to score a second before the end of the inning. That, following Drew Faurot’s RBI single in the second, gave FSU a 3-0 lead.

North Carolina got one back in the third on a huge Casey Cook RBI double.

Florida State then erupted in the fifth with RBI singles from Jaxson West and Max Williams to push the lead to 7-1. The Seminoles had six hits in the inning.

After surviving Honeycutt's push in the bottom of the fifth, the Seminoles then loaded the bases in the sixth but failed to score. It wasn't until Jax and Max hit back-to-back solo home runs to kick off the ninth inning that the Seminoles finally took back control of the game. That pushed them to the four-run win and into the semifinals.

With the victory, Florida State advances to the semifinals in Omaha. The Seminoles will take on Tennessee on Wednesday. The Volunteers secured their spot in the semifinals with a dominant 6-1 win over North Carolina on Sunday, the Tar Heels’ first loss of the tournament. Tennessee, which edged out a one-run win over Florida State in its first-round game, has yet to lose in Omaha.

No. 2 Kentucky and Florida were set to square off in the second game Tuesday in Omaha, but that was postponed to Wednesday due to weather. The winner of that contest will advance to the semifinals and take on Texas A&M, which is fresh off a 5-1 win over Kentucky on Monday.

Kentucky-Florida will begin at 10 a.m. local time Wednesday, making for a three-game day in Nebraska.

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