No. 24 Baseball Scores Nine Unanswered Runs, Rallies for Win
COLLEGE PARK, Md. Trailing by four runs in the fifth inning, the Virginia baseball team staged its largest rally of the season and scored nine unanswered runs, including six in the eighth, to defeat Maryland 11-6 Friday night at Shipley Field. The win pushed UVa’s winning streak against Maryland to 16 games dating to 2002.
Virginia had twice rallied from three-run holes this season, but staged its biggest comeback since May 16, 2006, when the Cavaliers rallied from a six-run deficit to win at Old Dominion.
Neal Davis (So., Baltimore, Md.) earned the win and improved to 2-0 with three scoreless innings of relief. Michael Schwimer (Sr., Alexandria, Va.) pitched the ninth to wrap up the game. Brad Taylor (1-3) took the loss after allowing two of the Cavaliers’ eighth-inning runs.
Greg Miclat (Jr., Concord, N.C.) went 3-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored for the Cavaliers, while Tyler Cannon (So., Pigeon Forge, Tenn.) and Franco Valdes (So., Miami, Fla.) each had two hits. Will Greenberg went 4-for-5 to lead the Terrapins.
Virginia (27-9, 9-7 ACC) used a six-run inning to rally from a 6-4 eighth-inning hole. With one out, Jeremy Farrell (Jr., Westlake, Ohio) hit an 0-2 pitch for an RBI single. A throwing error on a Farrell stolen base then allowed Dan Grovatt (Fr., Tabernacle, N.J.) to come home from third and tie the game, and a Patrick Wingfield (Sr., Winchester, Va.) groundout brought Farrell home with the go-ahead run.
From there, the floodgates opened. John Barr (Fr., Ivyland, Pa.) legged out an infield single to plate David Coleman (Fr., Richmond, Va.). Valdes then scored on a wild pitch, and Miclat singled to score Barr and give UVa a 10-6 lead. The Cavaliers added an insurance run in the ninth when Grovatt scored on a Terrapin fielding error.
Maryland (20-15, 5-11) cracked the scoreboard first with a run in the opening inning on a Mike Murphy single to score Greenberg, who had doubled with one out.
The Cavaliers used timely hitting to take a 2-1 lead in the third inning. With two out, Miclat singled to left to plate Valdes, and Cannon followed with a double to left-center to bring Miclat all the way home from first.
Maryland responded with three runs in the bottom of the third, highlighted by a two-run double from Murphy. Gerry Spessard followed with an RBI groundout to bring home Jensen Pupa. The Terrapins tacked on two runs in the fourth inning on RBI singles from Joe Palumbo and Greenberg.
Virginia sliced the lead in half with two runs in the fifth inning. Jarrett Parker (Fr., Stafford, Va.) led off with a single and later scored on a wild pitch, and Cannon grounded out to plate Miclat.
Maryland had a chance to extend its lead in the seventh inning and loaded the bases with one out, but Davis induced Chad Durakis to ground into a 5-2-3 double play to wrap up the inning.
Both starting pitchers earned no decisions. Virginia’s Jacob Thompson (Jr., Danville, Va.) tossed five innings, allowing six earned runs, 10 hits and a walk while striking out one. Maryland starter Steve Swinson went 7.1 innings, giving up six earned runs, seven hits and two walks while striking out seven.
The teams continue their series with the second game at 4 p.m. Saturday.