The Cal baseball team was California dreaming in Omaha for the last week and a half, but its remarkable run has ended.
Virginia (56-11) beat the Bears 8-1 Thursday night to advance to face South Carolina tomorrow night in a series that could hold this year's national champion. The Cavaliers must beat the Gamecocks twice to advance to next week's finals.
After it was announced at the start of this season that the baseball program would be cut in 2012 for budgetary reasons, the players banded together and begged for support for the program.
ESPN aired a clip of several Bears taking part in a hip hop music video put together by the players several months ago, complete with rhymes sending out musical messages of "SOS" for the program's future.
The supporters listened, or watched the baseball team advance through the NCAA Tournament this season, donating $9.7 million towards the program through philanthropic efforts.
Thursday night's game failed to showcase the true luster of the players in what has been a tumultuous season filled with adversity.
The start of the night seemed to foreshadow woes to come for the Bears, when the first pitch of the game hit Virginia's Chris Taylor.
The Cavaliers gained the initial lead in the third inning when Jared King scored on a wild pitch by Cal's Dixon Anderson.
Keith Werman made it 2-0 later in the inning off a sacrifice-fly.
Virginia perhaps put the game out of reach in the sixth inning, adding four runs to its lead.
Kenny Swab scored on a fielding error before Werman sent David Coleman home with a single to make it 4-0.
Werman crossed the plate for the second time of the night off a double by Chris Taylor to make it 5-0 before John Barr's single sent Taylor home to give the Cavs a 6-0 lead.
More errors haunted Cal in the eighth inning, allowing Virginia two more unearned runs to round out the Cavs' scoring.
Cal (38-23) managed just one run in the elimination game, coming in the eighth inning when Darrel Matthews came home on a single by Tony Renda.
Virginia's Tyler Wilson (10-0) took home the win to remain undefeated, while Anderson took home the loss.
The Cavaliers will send overall No. 2 draft pick Danny Hultzen to the mound to face South Carolina Friday night as they look to avenge a 7-1 loss to the Gamecocks just two days ago.
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