Goodbye Florida. Hello national championship opportunity.
With a spot in the College World Series final on the line Friday night, Arkansas earned a title shot with a 5-2 win over the Gators at Ameritrade Park in Omaha.
Clutch pitching by Matt Cronin over the final two innings helped Arkansas defeat the reigning champs on a night that he recorded his 13th save of the season, which ties the single-season school record.
The flame-throwing lefty out of Navarre threw 21 pitches, including 17 for strikes, as the Razorbacks continued their unbeaten run through the CWS. Arkansas has won all three of its games on college baseball’s biggest stage.
Called into action for the second consecutive night, Cronin did his job, striking out two while giving up one hit and not allowing a run. He becomes the third Navarre alum in two years to have an opportunity to play for a title.
Jordan Leggett helped Clemson win a national title in football two seasons ago and Quentin Randolph was part of a University of West Florida football team that reached the NCAA Division II championship game in just its second season of existence.
Cronin is having a phenomenal sophomore season. As Arkansas’ ace closer, he has struck out 56 and has 12 saves.