Jacksonville State rallies late to eliminate Illinois 7-5

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OXFORD, Miss. (AP) — Andrew Naismith had a pinch two-run double in the eighth inning as Jacksonville State rallied late to beat Illinois 7-5 in an NCAA Tournament elimination game Saturday at the Oxford Regional.

Jacksonville State (38-22) was scoreless until its first four batters in the seventh got hits. Nic Gaddis and Alex Strachan had two-run homers to make it 4-4.

Kellen Sarver led off the eighth for Illinois (36-21) with a homer, but the Gamecocks went ahead for the first time in the bottom of the inning. Gaddis had a one-out single off Ryan Schmitt (4-3), who then walked another batter. Naismith got his hit off closer Garrett Acton and scored on the same play after a throwing error.

Christian Edwards (7-5), the fourth JSU pitcher, threw 1 2/3 scoreless innings to finish the game.

Jeff Korte had a two-run homer that put Illinois up 4-0 in the sixth.

The Gamecocks face another elimination game Sunday against Clemson or host Mississippi, which beat them 16-2 on Friday night.

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