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Sunday, June 2, 1991 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Creighton's Upset Thrills Hometown Fans

AP

OMAHA, Neb. - Creighton showed an entire stadium and the Clemson Tigers that the Bluejays were more than "just happy to be here."

Hometown Creighton, in its first College World Series, upended the second-seeded Tigers 8-4 yesterday in the first round behind the seven-hit pitching of Mike Heathcott.

"We had a great day today," Creighton Coach Jim Hendry said. "It was tremendous to play in front of the city of Omaha like this.

"I never got an impression all week that our club was going to just show up and be happy to be here."

The Bluejays were powered by Scott Stahoviak's three hits and two RBI, and three RBI by Steve Hinton.

The game matched two of the nation's top offensive teams. Creighton led the country with a .361 batting average and Clemson topped all scorers with a 10-run average.

Creighton (50-20) rewarded the fourth-largest crowd in CWS history with 11 hits off six Clemson pitchers and the 16,244 in attendance made plenty of noise.

Heathcott earned a school-record 15th win against one loss. He allowed Clemson runners as far as second base in only one inning.

"I can't say enough about Mike Heathcott," Hendry said. "A lot of clubs will tell you he's not the best pitcher they've ever faced, but he just keeps putting up W's."

The Bluejays advance to tomorrow's 4:37 (PDT) winners-bracket game against Wichita State. Clemson (60-9) drops to an elimination game at 1:07 p.m. tomorrow against Long Beach State.

"Creighton was trying to hit line drives and we were trying to hit the ball out of the ballpark and as usual, we came out second best," Clemson Coach Bill Wilhelm said.

WICHITA STATE 8. LONG BEACH STATE 5.

-- Jim Audley had three hits and Doug Mirabelli drove in three runs to lead third-seeded Wichita State to an 8-5 win over No. 6 Long Beach State.

The Shockers' win set up a rematch with Missouri Valley Conference rival Creighton in tomorrow night's winners' bracket game. Wichita State, which beat Creighton (50-20) six times this season, is 64-12.

Long Beach State dropped to 44-21 and fell into tomorrow's elimination game against second-seeded Clemson (60-9).

The game was delayed by rain and a tornado warning for about an hour at the start.

The win by Shocker starter Kennie Steenstra (16-0) kept him tied with Fresno State's Bobby Jones for most wins in Division I this season. Jones picked up his 16th in Fresno's 6-3 opening CWS game against top-seeded Florida State. --------------------------

COLLEGE WORLD SERIES

AT OMAHA, NEB. (Double elimination) YESTERDAY -- Creighton 8, Clemson 4 -- Wichita State 8, Long Beach State 5.

TODAY -- Florida State (57-13) vs. Florida (49-20), 1:36 p.m. -- Fresno State (42-21) vs. LSU (52-18), 4:36 p.m.

Copyright (c) 1991 Seattle Times Company, All Rights Reserved.

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