OMAHA, Neb. - Pat Valaika's two-run double gave UCLA some cushion, record-setting closer David Berg survived a rocky ninth inning and UCLA defeated top-seeded North Carolina 4-1 Friday night to move to the championship round of the College World Series.
The Bruins (47-17) will begin the best-of-three finals Monday against Mississippi State.
"I'm proud of our team, but we still haven't accomplished what we came to do," UCLA coach John Savage said. "On to the next round."
The Tar Heels (59-12) twice loaded the bases in the ninth against Berg but came away with only one run, with the game ending on Landon Lassiter's fly out to center.
"The end of the year, it always stinks," UNC coach Mike Fox said. "What we did in the ninth inning is just indicative of our kids and how we played all year. Just fighting until the very end."
Both starters went six innings, with the Bruins' Grant Watson (9-3) allowing four hits and Kent Emanuel (11-5) giving up five singles and striking out seven.
UCLA opened the CWS with 2-1 victories over LSU and North Carolina State.
The Bruins scored single runs in the second and sixth innings and made it 4-0 in the seventh on Valaika's double.
North Carolina threatened in the fourth and seventh innings but couldn't push across any runs until Berg, the National Stopper of the Year, came on to start the ninth.
Cody Stubbs and Sky Bolte singled, and Berg walked Michael Russell to load the bases. Savage made a mound visit after Berg went 1-0 to Mike Zolk, whose groundout scored Stubbs.
Berg struck out Parks Jordan, and the bases were loaded again when he walked Chaz Frank. When Lassiter's fly landed in Brian Carroll's glove, the Bruins' dugout emptied in celebration.
• Mississippi State 4, Oregon State 1: OSU's season ended with the Beavers waiting for the big hit that never came.
Oregon State advanced runners to second base in six innings but could get only one home. The Beavers were 1 for 8 with runners in scoring position and hit into three double plays.
'This certainly isn't the way we planned it, and it wasn't for a lack of effort," coach Pat Casey said.
• What: Championship series (best of three): Mississippi St. vs. UCLA
• Where: Omaha, Neb.
All games on ESPN
• Game 1: 5 p.m. Monday
• Game 2: 5 p.m. Tuesday
• Game 3: 5 p.m. Wednesday, if necessary