Ballard's Complete Game Lifts #21 Virginia Past #24 Wake Forest, 10-2
March 26, 2006
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – – Mike Ballard tossed the second complete game of his career and No. 21 Virginia used back-to-back home runs from David Adams and Brandon Guyer in a five-run first inning as the Cavaliers won the rubber game of the three-game series with No. 24 Wake Forest, 10-2, Sunday afternoon. Adams finished 3-for-4 with three RBIs while Jeremy Farrell was 3-for-4 with two RBI for UVa (22-5, 6-3 ACC), which won its second straight Atlantic Coast Conference series. The 22-5 record is the best start in program history while the series win put the Cavs in second place in the ACC Coastal Division.
“We needed Mike Ballard to get us off to a good start today. He responded with a great pitching performance,” UVa head baseball coach Brian O’Connor said. “Our guys responded well to the challenge against a very good Wake Forest team after falling yesterday. In this league, you have to get conference wins at home, which is something we did as we get ready to go on the road for back-to-back conference weekends.”
Ballard (4-1) recorded eight strikeouts in nine innings and allowed one earned run on eight hits. He pitched the first Cavalier complete game since Robert Poutier tossed nine innings against Longwood last season. Tim Henry was 2-for-3 with one run scored while Guyer went 2-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored for UVa, who out-hit the Demon Deacons (19-7, 5-4 ACC), 12-8. Andy Goff led the Demon Deacons going 3-for-4 at the plate. Brian Shust was 2-for-4. Tyler Smith took his first loss of the season as he allowed five earned runs in one inning.
The Cavaliers jumped on Smith for five runs on four hits in the bottom of the first. Henry led off with a double down the right field line. After Brandon Marsh walked and Sean Doolittle singled in Henry for the game’s first run, Adams hit his fourth home run of the season. His three-run shot to left center gave the Hoos a 4-0 lead. Guyer then followed with a solo home run to left field. It was the first time since the 2004 season that UVa hit consecutive home runs in an inning. Ryan Zimmerman and Joe Koshansky both homered back-to-back against Wake Forest in the second game of their three-game series at Davenport Field in 2004.
Wake Forest made it 5-1 in the top of second when Goff singled in Brendan Enich. Virginia extended its lead to 8-1 in the bottom of the fifth. Adams and Guyer singled and Tom Hagan walked loading the bases with no outs. Farrell’s two-run single to right field gave UVa a 7-1 lead. Beau Seabury then squeezed home Hagan when he laid down a bunt down the first base line giving the Hoos an 8-1 lead.
The Cavaliers made it 10-1 in the bottom of the eighth when Guyer drew a bases loaded walk for a 9-1 lead. Hagan’s sacrifice fly brought in the final run for the Cavaliers.
Wake Forest scratched across one run in the top of the ninth when Dan Rosaia drove in Shust to make it, 10-2. Ballard then struck out Evan Ocheltree to end the game.
Doolittle and Greg Miclat each finished with one hit for the Cavaliers.
Virginia wraps up its 10-game home-stand Tuesday and Wednesday. UVa faces Coppin State at 6 p.m. Tuesday before hosting Norfolk State Wednesday at 5 p.m.