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McNamee helps "U" stay alive

From Staff, Wire Reports

NORWICH, Conn. -- A four-run second inning gave West Virginia the lift it needed Thursday as the Mountaineers stayed alive in the Big East baseball tournament with a 7-2 victory over Seton Hall.

Pitcher Garrett Zyskowski improved to 9-2 as he threw his fifth complete game of the year for West Virginia. Zyskowski struck out eight and gave up eight hits.

Matt Hart and Joe McNamee each drove in two runs for the Mountaineers in the second inning as WVU built a 5-0 lead. Hart was 2-for-3, while McNamee was 2-for-4.

"I'm pleased with the way we bounced back after such a tough loss last night," said West Virginia coach Greg Van Zant, referring to the Mountaineers" 5-4 loss to Notre Dame on Wednesday.

"We could have packed our bags and been out of the tournament. But our guys really battled this afternoon."

The Mountaineers pounded out 14 hits on the day. Jim Kavourias was 3-for-4 while Abe Barker was 2-for-4 with a double.

WVU took a 1-0 lead in the first on McNamee's RBI single. The Mountaineers went up 5-0 in the second thanks to Hart and McNamee.

Kevin Olkowski's double in the sixth made the score 6-1. He later scored on a wild pitch to give the Mountaineers a comfortable lead.

West Virginia (37-16-1) advances to play today against Providence, an upset winner over top seed Rutgers in the second game on Thursday. The loss eliminated Seton Hall (25-23).

Freshman Mike O'Keefe came through with a two-run single to lift Providence to the upset. O'Keefe also had an RBI double in the first to account for all of the Friars' scoring.

Mike Galligan was the winning pitcher in relief of Rob Corraro. The two combined for a five-hitter with six strikeouts.

Notre Dame's 3-2 win over St. John's put the Fighting Irish in control of the tournament.

The lone unbeaten team left in the double-elimination tournament, Notre Dame took an early 3-0 lead and then held on.

Brad Lidge (8-2) threw six-hit ball for seven innings for the win, while Aaron Heilman tossed two innings of no-hit ball to earn the save.

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