AP Sports Writer

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) _ Defending national champion South Carolina is heading back to the College World Series.

Christian Walker’s home run in the eighth inning broke a 2-all tie and the Gamecocks turned three straight inning-ending double plays to defeat Connecticut 8-2 and sweep the NCAA Super Regional on Sunday night.

South Carolina put the game away with a five-run ninth, clinching its second consecutive trip to Omaha, Neb., and fifth since 2002. It was the Gamecocks’ 11th straight NCAA tournament win, a streak that started last year at Rosenblatt Stadium in Omaha, Neb.

The Huskies (45-20-1) led 2-0 entering the fourth and had several chances to extend the lead but could not cash in against South Carolina (50-14), stranding eight runners and closing the fifth, sixth and seventh innings with double plays.

Gamecocks closer Matt Price got the final six outs for his 18th save and third of the NCAA tournament.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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