Cavaliers Earn NCAA Berth in Irvine Regional
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. The Virginia baseball team has been selected to compete in the NCAA Irvine Regional, the NCAA announced today. The Cavaliers, seeded second in the regional, will play No. 3-seed San Diego State at 7 p.m. ET Friday in Irvine, Calif. UC Irvine, the No. 6 national seed, is the top seed in the region and will play No. 4 Fresno State, the defending national champion, at 11 p.m. ET Friday.
The games for the Irvine Regional, a four-team, double-elimination format, will be played on Cicerone Field at Anteater Ballpark. Irvine will be playing host to a regional for the first time in school history. All games in the regional will be televised live by ESPNU.
Games will be played at 7 and 11 p.m. ET Friday through Sunday. If necessary, a second championship game will be held at 11 p.m. Monday.
Virginia (43-12-1) won the ACC Championship yesterday, defeating seventh-ranked Florida State, 6-3. UVa defeated No. 13 Clemson, No. 4 North Carolina and Duke en route to its second-ever ACC Baseball Championship crown. Outfielder Dan Grovatt was named the tournament’s MVP, while Franco Valdes (catcher) and Danny Hultzen (Utility/DH) also were named to the all-tournament team. The ACC title was the second tournament crown in UVa baseball history and the third overall (1972 regular season, 1996 tournament).
UVa will be making its second straight NCAA tournament trip to California. Last year, the Cavaliers competed in the NCAA Fullerton Regional.
San Diego State (40-21) reached the championship game of the Mountain West Conference tournament championship, falling to Utah in the title game. The Aztecs finished 15-9 (fourth) in the Mountain West regular season and are coached by MLB Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn. The Aztecs boast one of the nation’s premier starting pitchers, right-hander Stephen Strasburg, who is 13-0 with a 1.24 ERA and 180 strikeouts this year.
UC Irvine (43-13), ranked No. 1 in the national polls, clinched an automatic berth to the NCAA postseason by winning the Big West Conference championship. The Anteaters finished conference play with a 22-2 mark.
Fresno State (32-28) played its way into the NCAA tournament by winning the Western Athletic Conference tournament champion. The defending national champions survived four elimination games to win their fourth straight WAC tournament title.
All-session reserved ticket packages are available for $100. Bleacher all-session general admission packages are $75, while lawn seating packages are $50. Single-game tickets will go on sale Wednesday. The UC Irvine ticket office phone number is (949) 824-5000.