No. 1 Cavaliers Return to Action This Weekend vs. No. 21 North Carolina
VIRGINIA CAVALIERS (40-9, 18-6 ACC)
Probable Starting Rotation
Fri. – LHP Danny Hultzen (7-1, 2.00 ERA)
Sat. – RHP Robert Morey (7-2, 3.60 ERA)
Sun. – RHP Cody Winiarski (5-0, 4.11 ERA)
NORTH CAROLINA TAR HEELS (32-17, 11-13 ACC)
Probable Starting Rotation
Fri. – RHP Matt Harvey (6-2, 2.68 ERA)
Sat. – RHP Chris Munnelly (2-1, 4.96 ERA)
Sun. – RHP Patrick Johnson (5-3, 3.62 ERA)
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Following a nine-day break for final exams, the top-ranked Virginia baseball team returns to action this weekend as it plays host to North Carolina in a three-game series at Davenport Field. The series begins at 7 p.m. Friday. Saturday, the teams will play at 1 p.m. in a game which will be televised by the ACC’s Regional Sports Networks. The series concludes at 1 p.m. Sunday, with Senior Day ceremonies preceding the game at 12:30 p.m.
Both teams enter the weekend on winning streaks – Virginia (40-9, 18-6 ACC) has won a season-high 11 in a row, while North Carolina (32-17, 11-13), which is ranked No. 21 nationally by the NCBWA, has captured eight straight games. The Cavaliers are tied with Miami for the best record in the ACC Coastal Division entering play this weekend.
Fans are strongly encouraged to purchase their tickets in advance and arrive early to avoid lines on game day. Fewer than 1,300 tickets remain for the Friday and Saturday games, while fewer than 1,000 tickets remain for the Sunday contest. Tickets may be ordered online at VirginiaSports.com, in person at the Virginia Athletics Ticket Office in Bryant Hall at Scott Stadium or by phone at (800) 542-UVA1. General Admission seating is available in the left-field bleachers, the first baseline bleachers, on the grass hillside and in the new right-field bleachers, which make their debut this weekend.
Advance ticket sales online end four hours prior to home baseball games. The ticket booths and gates at Davenport Field open at 5 p.m. on Friday, 11 a.m. on Saturday, and 10:30 a.m. on Sunday.
The Cavaliers last took the field May 4 against VCU, with UVa scoring a 10-5 win. It marked Virginia’s fifth straight game scoring in double figures and the ninth time during the 11-game win streak. Jarrett Parker (Jr., Stafford, Va.) homered, tripled and drove in three runs, while Steven Proscia (So., Suffern, N.Y.) and Phil Gosselin (Jr., West Chester, Pa.) each had a pair of hits in the decisive win.
Virginia is hitting .370, with 65 extra-base hits, including 43 doubles, in the current 11-game win streak. The team owns a 2.73 ERA during this stretch, walking just 21 while striking out 88. Opponents are batting just .229 in the last 11 games.
In this time frame UVa has stolen 15 bases in 17 attempts – opponents are just 6-for-18 in that same 11-game span. Proscia has 18 RBI during the streak, while Gosselin has a team-high 19 hits. Keith Werman (So., Vienna, Va.) has a team-best .536 batting average (15-for-28), while Reed Gragnani (Fr., Richmond, Va.) is hitting .455 (10-for-22) during that span.
Overall, UVa is batting an ACC-best .345 this season. The Cavaliers also lead the conference in fielding at a .979 clip. UVa ranks second in the conference with a 3.61 team ERA.
Virginia is ranked No. 3 in the latest RPI report, which was released Tuesday by the NCAA. Arizona State and Florida top the rankings. Virginia has 12 wins against the RPI top 50 this year, with series against UNC (No. 28) and Miami (No. 9) remaining.
North Carolina rolled to its eighth straight win Wednesday night with a 10-0 blanking of College of Charleston. UNC swept Wake Forest last weekend in a three-game series at home. Dillon Hazlett leads the team with a .357 batting average, while Levi Michael is close behind at .353. The Tar Heels are batting .314 as a team and have a 4.24 team ERA (both are fifth in the ACC). On the mound, Matt Harvey has been the stalwart of the pitching staff and owns a 6-2 record and 2.68 ERA while starting on Friday nights for the Tar Heels.
North Carolina holds a 171-97-4 edge in its all-time series with Virginia, although the series has been extremely competitive of late. The teams split four meetings last year, with UNC winning two of three at home in the regular season before UVa won 11-1 (8 innings) in a game ended by run rule at the ACC Tournament. Overall, the teams have split the last 12 games over the past three years.
Virginia concludes the regular season next week. UVa plays host to VMI in the home finale at 6 p.m. Tuesday, then wraps up ACC play with a three-game series at Miami Thursday through Saturday (May 20-22).
WEEKEND PARKING INFORMATION
The John Paul Jones Arena surface parking lot is not available for baseball event parking this weekend because of shows at JPJA.
On Friday night there will not be a charge to park in the University Hall lots and the JPJA Parking Garage, but parking may be limited. If University Hall is the site of the PVCC graduation that event will start at 6 p.m. and the Sesame Street Live production at JPJA begins at 7 p.m. Fans attending the baseball game can also park for free at the Emmet/Ivy Parking Garage and the Culbreth Road Parking Garage.
For the Saturday baseball game, parking is available at no charge in the University Hall lots, the JPJA Parking Garage, the Emmet/Ivy Parking Garage and the Culbreth Road Parking Garage.
The University Hall parking lots and the JPJA Parking Garage will be used for the baseball game and a first round NCAA Women’s Lacrosse Tournament game on Sunday. There is a $5 cash parking charge for NCAA postseason lacrosse events, so baseball patrons will be charged for parking for that one regular season date in those parking areas. Parking is available in the Emmet/Ivy Parking Garage and the Culbreth Road Parking Garage at no charge.