Tim Hoehn slugged two home runs and Josh Smith hit a grand slam as top-seeded William and Mary began its stay in the Colonial Athletic Association tournament with an 11-4 win over Delaware in Wilmington, N.C.
The Tribe advanced to Friday's noon game against the second-seeded College of Charleston, which beat third-seeded UNC Wilmington 7-4. The W&M-Charleston winner will have two opportunities in the championship round to claim the crown and an NCAA automatic bid.
W&M starter Josh Inghram was hit hard at times by the Blue Hens, who fell into a Thursday 7 p.m. game against Northeastern, but survived for the win.
Smith's grand slam gave W&M a seven-run lead in the seventh and removed most doubt of the outcome.
In the Cougars' win, Carl Wise hit a three-run homer to right-center field in the fifth inning, giving Charleston a 5-4 lead.
The W&M-Charleston pairing comes less than a week after the Cougars won two of three in a memorable regular-season series in South Carolina.
The first game of the set lasted 23 innings Friday, the second-longest game in NCAA history, and Charleston won.
In a doubleheader Saturday, the Cougars won the opener, setting up a nightcap that would determine which team would be the tournament's No. 1 seed. W&M won that, taking its first CAA regular-season crown.
In the night's last game, Delaware senior left-hander Brandon Hinkle (5-1), making just his second start since April 5 due to arm trouble, threw 137 pitches over eight-plus innings as the Blue Hens ousted Northeastern 3-2. Delaware will face UNCW in an elimination game at 3:30 Friday.
Freshman outfielder Joseph Guaragna's first college hit was a two-run double in a three-run fifth inning as Old Dominion held off Florida International 3-2 Thursday to stay alive in the Conference USA tournament in Hattiesburg, Miss.
The Monarchs (34-23), 1-1 in the double-elimination event, advanced to a 4 p.m. Friday game against Middle Tennessee State, which lost 8-2 to Rice after beating ODU in the first round.
ODU has a chance for an NCAA at-large bid even if it doesn't take the title, so each win is crucial toward that resume'.
ODU junior reliever Conner Overton came on in the eighth and got the final two outs of that inning with a runner on third base, then pitched out of a two-out jam in the ninth for his fourth save of the season. Starter Andy Roberts (6-3) gained his third straight win.
Guaragna started in place of Josh Eldridge, who was ill.
C-USA Player of the Year Aramis Garcia hit a solo home run and RBI double for the Golden Panthers.
In the winners' bracket, besides Rice's victory, Texas-San Antonio defeated East Carolina 8-3.
Virginia's pool-play debut in the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament was a 7-6 loss to Maryland in Greensboro, N.C.
LaMonte Wade hit two home runs for the Terrapins, who seemingly are headed for a rare NCAA tournament at-large berth even if they don't win the ACC banner. Kevin Martir gave Maryland the lead for good at 6-4 with a two-out, two-run homer in the seventh.
The Cavaliers (43-12), who have spent much of the year ranked No. 1 in the nation but are the tournament's third seed, must beat North Carolina on Friday and Florida State on Saturday to have any chance of reaching the championship game.
Nick Howard had a career-high four hits for Virginia. U.Va.'s Joe McCarthy belted a two-run homer in the ninth to cut a 7-4 gap to 7-6, but the Cavaliers stranded the potential tying runner at first base. ...
Later in the day, senior Drew Van Orden pitched his first collegiate shutout as Duke shut out Georgia Tech 6-0, putting both teams at 1-1 in pool competition. The Blue Devils' Ryan Deitrich had four hits, including his fourth home run in as many games. ...
Senior Steve Wilkerson hit a walk-off single in the ninth inning to score Tyler Slaton, giving Clemson a 3-2 win over Miami.
The Tigers (36-22) improved to 2-0 in the tournament, while the Hurricanes (40-17) -- the top seeds -- fell to 0-2 in the tourney despite being ranked third nationally.
Clemson's Jack Leggett registered his 1,300th win in his 35th season as a head coach in Division I.
VCU turned an around-the-horn triple play in the first inning and improved to 2-0 in the Atlantic 10 tournament by beating top-seeded Saint Louis, the tournament host, 9-4.
Matt Davis doubled twice for the Rams, who built an early 6-1 lead.
VCU will face George Mason in the sole matchup of tournament unbeatens. The Patriots edged St. Joseph's 5-4 as starter John Williams earned his fifth win of the season and Taylor Hunt got a save. ...
Richmond's season ended with a 12-2 loss to St. Joseph's, which bounced back from its loss to Mason.
Virginia player Ryan Shane's upset bid just fell short in the NCAA singles round of 32.
Playing UCLA's Marcos Giron, whose ATP ranking is the highest of any player in the NCAA field, Shane lost 3-6, 6-3, 6-4.
Virginia Tech sophomore Amerigo Contini also dropped his second-round match, losing 3-6, 7-6, 6-1 to Florent Diep of Florida.
But in doubles, VCU's Alexis Heugas and Nick Jones -- the only team in the draw of 32 teams representing a state school -- beat Nevada's Robert Allan and Victor Ouvrard 7-6, 5-7, 6-3.
Hampton Roads Academy graduate Shelby Harris and Lindsay Raulston, the top seeds in the NCAA Division III doubles tournament in Claremont, Calif., won 6-1, 6-1 against a Hope (Mich.) tandem to reach the quarterfinals.
Harris, from Newport News, and Raulston, from Franklin, will return to action Friday against Samantha Chao and Lea Lynn Yen of Pomona-Pitzer. Chao and Yen defeated Raulston and Harris in regular season play this season 8-5.
In the singles first round, Raulston fell to fifth-seeded Gabby Devlin of Amherst 6-3, 6-1.
Danielle Collins is U.Va.'s lone remaining hope in the NCAA D-I tournament's individual portion on Georgia's courts.
Collins overcame California's Annet Schutting 6-3, 6-3 to reach Friday's round of 16.
In the doubles first round, Southern California's Brynn Boren and Zoe Katz beat U.Va.'s Julia Elbaba and Rachel Pierson 6-3, 7-6 (10-8). Those two Cavaliers were seeded to reach the quarterfinals.
An eight-run fourth enabled the Gwinnett Braves (26-19) to overcome a six-run deficit and beat the Norfolk Tides 10-7 in a series opener in Lawrenceville, Ga.
A six-run second inning off Gus Schlosser, who began the season in the majors with Atlanta, gave the Tides a 6-0 lead.
Joey Terdoslavich doubled twice and scored twice for the Braves, while Brandon Boggs and Tommy La Stella had three hits and U.Va. product Philip Gosselin had two.
Richmond's scoreless series finale at New Britain was suspended because of weather with the Rock Cats batting in the bottom of the second inning.
The Rock Cats took two of three in the series in Connecticut.