No. 1 Virginia Baseball Sweeps Doubleheader Against North Carolina
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The top-ranked Virginia baseball team earned a doubleheader sweep over No. 21 North Carolina Saturday afternoon at Davenport Field, winning 3-2 in the opener and 5-1 in the second game to run its win streak to 13 games.
In the opener, John Barr (Jr., Ivyland, Pa.) hit a game-winning single to score Jarrett Parker (Jr., Stafford, Va.) with two outs in the ninth inning to lift the Cavaliers to a thrilling win in front of a stadium-record crowd of 4,257. In the finale, Robert Morey (Jr., Virginia Beach, Va.) tossed a complete-game three-hitter and UVa hit two homers in the 5-1 win.
Pitching was the big story of the day for Virginia (42-9, 20-6 ACC). UVa limited the Tar Heels to nine hits – one for extra bases – in the two games.
Jarrett Parker (Jr., Stafford, Va.) went 4-for-7 in the doubleheader, while Phil Gosselin (Jr., West Chester, Pa.) racked up four RBI in the twinbill, with three coming on a three-run home run in game two.
The first game was a pitchers’ duel throughout. The teams combined for just 13 hits – all singles – and neither team scored from the third through eighth innings.
After trailing 2-1 since the second inning, North Carolina tied the game in the top of the ninth inning with a two-out run before the Cavaliers staged a rally of their own when Parker led off with an infield single – UVa’s first hit since the third inning. He advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Tyler Cannon (Sr., Pigeon Forge, Tenn.). With two outs and a 3-2 count, Barr singled through the left side of the infield, with the ball bouncing between Parker’s legs and into left field, with Parker scoring easily to give the Cavaliers the victory.
Kevin Arico (Jr., Flemington, N.J.) picked up the win and improved to 1-1 this season after pitching the ninth inning. Virginia starting pitcher Danny Hultzen (So., Bethesda, Md.) battled through some control problems to work five innings, allowing one earned run, three hits and a season-high four walks while striking out four. Branden Kline (Fr., Frederick, Md.) bridged the gap with three shutout innings of relief.
North Carolina starter Matt Harvey (6-3) pitched extremely well and went the distance for North Carolina. He allowed three earned runs, seven hits and three walks while striking out six in 8.2 innings.
Virginia used a two-out rally to get to Harvey for a first-inning run. Dan Grovatt (Jr., Tabernacle, N.J.) was hit by a pitch, and Steven Proscia (So., Suffern, N.Y.) followed with a single to left. Parker then cranked a single to right field to plate Grovatt.
UNC parlayed consecutive two-out hits from Tommy Coyle, Jacob Stallings and Mike Cavasinni into a run of its own in the second inning.
Virginia answered with a run in its half of the second. John Hicks (So., Sandy Hook, Va.) led off with a single and moved to second on a Harvey balk. With two out Gosselin stroked a single to center to score Hicks.
Both teams went hitless from the fourth through seventh innings until UNC’s Ryan Graepel singled through the left side of the infield with two outs in the eighth inning. In the ninth inning North Carolina got back-to-back one-out singles from Stallings and Cavassini. After Arico struck out Ben Bunting, Levi Michael reached on an error, with Stallings scoring from second base to knot the score. Arico rebounded to strike out Dillon Hazlett to set the stage for UVa’s heroics in the bottom of the ninth.
Morey (8-2) pitched his second straight complete game, after winning with a complete-game effort at Duke on May 1. It marked the first back-to-back complete games by a Virginia pitcher since Andrew Dobies did so against NC State (March 26) and Duke (April 2) in 2004.
Morey allowed just three hits and two walks while striking out eight. UNC starter Chris Munnelly (2-2) worked six innings and gave up five earned runs, six hits and two walks while fanning five.
Parker had two hits for UVa, while Gosselin and Hicks each homered.
Again, the teams battled through a low-scoring affair early, with Morey and Munnelly locked in a scoreless battle through four innings. Morey held the Tar Heels hitless until Seth Baldwin’s leadoff double in the sixth inning, while Munnelly allowed just a Parker second-inning single until the Cavaliers struck for three runs in the fifth inning.
Kenny Swab (Jr., Kernersville, N.C.) and Barr hit back-to-back singles with one out in the fifth before Gosselin ripped a three-run home run into the left-field bleachers for his seventh homer of the year.
After Baldwin’s leadoff double in the sixth, Stallings laid down a sacrifice bunt to move the runner to third. Cavasinni then grounded out to score Baldwin and cut the lead to 3-1.
Virginia again used the long ball in its half of the sixth. Parker ripped a double to right to start the inning and scored one out later when Hicks hit a first-pitch home run over the left-field bleachers. Hicks’ sixth homer of the year stretched the UVa lead to 5-1.
That was plenty of support for Morey. He retired 14 straight batters from the first through fifth innings, then gave up three hits, a walk and hit batsman over the final four frames.
The teams wrap up the three-game series with a 1 p.m. contest Sunday. Prior to the game, Virginia will celebrate its four seniors during Senior Day ceremonies – Tyler Cannon, Neal Davis, Corey Hunt and Franco Valdes will be honored.
For parking Sunday, 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. 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. The JPJA Surface lot will not be available because of an event at the arena.