(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Carlos Beltran and David Freese each hit two-run homers and the St. Louis Cardinals held on to beat the San Francisco Giants 6-4 Sunday night in Game 1 of the NL championship series.

The wild-card Cardinals took an early 6-0 lead and made it stand up. Two days earlier, St. Louis overcame a 6-0 deficit to beat Washington in the deciding Game 5 of the division series.

Game 2 in the best-of-seven series is tonight. Chris Carpenter pitches for the Cardinals against Ryan Vogelsong.