The St. Mary’s Rattlers will play Kennesaw State University at 9 a.m. Friday in Game 4 of the first round of the NCAA Division II National Finals Tournament at Salem, Va.

Kennesaw beat South Carolina-Upstate 8-6 Sunday to win the South Atlantic Regional. The win is impressive because Kennesaw had to battle back from losing its first game in the regional tournament on Thursday. The Owls lost to Columbus State 1-0, then beat Coker 12-0, Carson-Newman 3-1 and Columbus State 4-3 to get to Saturday’s game with USC-Upstate. Kennesaw beat the Spartans 7-2 to force Sunday’s game.

Sunday’s game was delayed for an hour and 45 minutes for rain.

Kennesaw State is 53-11 on the year, and the Owls were co-champs of the Peach Belt Conference regular season with West Florida. Columbus State won the Peach Belt Tournament.

You can view Kennesaw’s season stats through Saturday by visiting the Peach Belt Conference Web site: KSU Stats on Peach Belt Site.

St. Mary’s is the champion of the South Central Region. The Rattlers beat Regis 8-1 on Thursday, defending national champs Angelo State 9-1 in five innings on Friday, and Angelo State again in five innings 12-0 on Saturday to reach the national tourmament for the third time in four years. St.Mary’s won the national title in 2002, the last time the tournament was held in Salem, Va.

Kennesaw State won back-to-back national championships in 1995 and 1996.

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