OMAHA, Neb. – Adrian Alaniz and J. Brent Cox combined on a four-hitter, and Will Crouch and David Maroul homered, leading Texas to a 4-2 win over Florida in Game 1 of the College World Series championship round Saturday night.

The Longhorns (55-16) can clinch their second national championship in four years and sixth overall with another win over the Gators (48-22) on Sunday.

If necessary, Game 3 of the series would be Monday.

Alaniz (8-3) turned in his second strong outing in the CWS.

He had allowed one run in seven innings of a 5-1 win over Baylor in the Longhorns’ opener.

The redshirt freshman right-hander turned Saturday’s game over to Cox in the eighth with runners on first and second.

Then the Longhorns had to withstand some anxious moments.

Cox, making his CWS-record 12th appearance, struck out Jeff Corsaletti and Adam Davis before Matt LaPorta’s two-run single pulled the Gators within 4-2. Cox got out of the jam after walking the bases loaded by striking out Brian Leclerc.

Cox struck out six in two innings to earn his 18th save, which leads the nation.

The Longhorns, not known for their power, got their 53rd and 54th homers in 71 games.

Maroul’s two-run homer in the fourth put the Longhorns up 4-0 against a Florida team that was short of pitching options.

Gators coach Pat McMahon started freshman left-hander Stephen Locke (5-2), who hadn’t appeared since a May 25 regular-season game against Arkansas.

The Gators were put in their predicament after Alan Horne injured his left hamstring in Wednesday’s game against Arizona State. That forced starter Tommy Boss to pitch 5 2-3 innings of relief, and he couldn’t come back on short rest.

Connor Falkenbach relieved Locke in the fifth, and pitched 3 2-3 shutout innings before giving way to Mike Pete.

Alaniz, who was charged with Florida’s two runs, struck out five and walked four.

The Longhorns opened the scoring in the first. Locke walked leadoff hitter Nick Peoples, and he advanced on a sacrifice and groundout before Crouch hit an RBI double over center fielder Corsaletti.

Crouch made it 2-0 in the third, lining a shot over the left-field fence for his seventh home run of the year.

It was 4-0 in the fourth after Chance Wheeless singled and Maroul hit a towering home run to left. It was Maroul’s 10th homer of the season.

AP-ES-06-25-05 2218EDT

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