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Michigan fends off a late comeback attempt from Oregon in NCAA Regional opener

Michigan Baseball defeats Oregon, 8-6.

College World Series - Michigan v Vanderbilt - Game Three Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

The Michigan Wolverines picked up a regional win in Louisville last night, as they took down the Oregon Ducks 8-6. The Wolverines had the lead for the majority of the game, but Oregon mounted a comeback late, which was thwarted by the Wolverines the very half inning after they tied the game.

The scoring started in the second when Michigan’s two-sport athlete, Joey Velasquez, grounded into a fielder’s choice to first base, scoring Tito Flores.

The lead was expanded by a Jimmy Obertop home run to right field in the third scoring Matt Frey. The home run marked Obertop’s 13th home run of the year and his fourth in the last six games.

Oregon had some damage control in the fourth, as RF Anthony Hall doubled down the left field line. Riley Bertram’s throwing error on the play allowed a run to score, and Hall to advance to third base. Hall scored shortly after on a wild pitch from Michigan’s starting pitcher, Connor O’Halloran.

Jimmy Obertop wasn’t done yet. Another two-run home run to dead center field, scoring Matt Frey again in the fifth marked Obertop’s 14th home run of the year, and fifth in the last six games to expand the lead back to 5-2. The Wolverines added a sixth run in the inning as well, as Velasquez earned his second RBI of the evening with a single up the middle, scoring Riley Bertram.

Cue the Oregon comeback. The Ducks started the scoring up again in the fifth with a Brennan Milone RBI double. In the next inning, Josiah Cromwick came off the bench for the Ducks and delivered with another RBI double, bringing the lead back down to two for the Wolverines. The Wolverines narrowly avoided disaster to end the sixth inning, with runners on second and third and two outs as Riley Bertram dove and snagged a line drive that was destined for left field to save a few runs.

The Ducks offense was relentless. A Brennan Milone solo home run in the seventh cut the lead to one, and Anthony Hall’s second RBI double of the game, this one down the right field line, knotted the score in the seventh.

This lead didn’t hold very long. In the next half inning, Matt Frey launched a two-run shot to right center field, scoring Clark Elliot and giving the Wolverines an 8-6 lead.

Cameron Weston slammed the door shut; in 2.1 innings of work, he allowed only one hit, allowing no runs, with no walks and one strikeout. Weston earned his fifth win of the season.

Pitching was fantastic for the Wolverines, as Connor O’Halloran gave Michigan a quality start, going 5.2 innings and only surrendering three runs, walking two and striking out six.

Michigan will now face Louisville in the winner’s bracket of the regional at 4 p.m. today, Saturday, June 4. The game will air on ESPN2.