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June 2, 2012

Rain shaking up Charlottesville regional

NORMAN — By John Shinn

Transcript Sports Writer

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — Weather and indecision are wreaking havoc at the NCAA Tournament's Charlottesville Regional.

The opening game between top-seeded Virginia and fourth-seeded Army was suspended in the top of the first inning after a 20-minute downpour at Davenport Field. Virginia's grounds crew struggled to get the tarp on the field, which added to the delay. 

Nonetheless, the field looked like it was ready for play at 12:45 p.m. EST.

NCAA officials then decided to send Army back to its hotel and Virginia's players home. The decision was baffling considering there was no lightning and there had only been a brief burst of rain. The sun was out for about 90 minutes before it started raining again at around 2:20 p.m. It likely wasn't enough time to get the full game in. However, there was enough of a window to get in several innings.

The second burst, which lasted for nearly an hour, turned the outfield into a complete quagmire. There still hasn't been a time set for when the Army-Virginia game will resume. 

That leaves OU and Appalachian State in a bigger bind. Those teams were supposed to play 50 minutes after the conclusion of the Virginia-Army game. 

The weather forecast still calls for an 80-percent chance of rain throughout Friday night. 

If the Sooners and Mountaineers have to wait until Saturday to play their game, it means both teams will have to play twice on Saturday. The loser would play an elimination game, and the winner would face the Virginia-Army winner.

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