AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — C.J Hinojosa drove in two runs and Parker French pitched six scoreless innings as Texas beat Houston 4-0 Saturday to win an NCAA super regional and advance to the College World Series.
Texas (43-19) is headed to Omaha for the 35th time, more than any other school, after missing the NCAA tournament altogether the previous two years. The Longhorns' last trip to the CWS was in 2011.
The Longhorns will face the winner of the super regional between Oklahoma State and California-Irvine, which the Anteaters lead 1-0. The first game in Omaha would be on June 14.
Texas coach Augie Garrido figured he had enough talent to restore the program, but wasn't sure if they'd reach the CWS.
"I knew we could," Garrido said. "But I didn't know that we would be able to make the sacrifices that it takes to be selfless and to really committing their heart and their soul."
Texas has won the World Series six times, including twice under Garrido — most recently in 2005.
Still, the Longhorns needed some redemption for their program.
The 75-year-old Garrido has won 1,917 games, more than any collegiate baseball coach, in 46 seasons — the last 18 at Texas.
However, Texas did not receive a bid to the tournament the past two seasons, the first time the Longhorns had been left out since 1997 and 1998 — Garrido's first two seasons as coach. They finished last in the Big 12 in 2013, failing to qualify even for the league's tournament.
Longhorns center fielder Mark Payton and Nathan Thornhill — the winning pitcher in Friday's series opener — said they returned for their senior seasons to help the team instead of signing professional contracts.
Payton was selected in the 16th round of the MLB draft by Cleveland last year and Thornhill was taken by Houston in the 24th round. Both elevated their status this season as the New York Yankees picked Payton in the seventh round, and Thornhill went to Philadelphia in the 13th.
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