CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Virginia Cavaliers (39-18-1) couldn’t overcome a five-run effort in the second inning by the Appalachian State Mountaineers (41-16) on Sunday afternoon, falling into the loser’s bracket with a 6-5 setback in front of 4,142 fans at Davenport Field.

UVa returns to action tonight against Oklahoma in an elimination game. First pitch is scheduled at approximately 7:30 p.m.

Appalachian State wasted no time getting on the scoreboard, plating one run in the bottom of the first frame to take a 1-0 lead. Hector Crespo was credited with starting the inning off with a double after his towering pop up to shallow left field was lost in the sun by UVa shortstop Chris Taylor. Brandon Burris executed the sacrifice bunt to advance Crespo. Will Callaway followed ripping a double past a diving Stephen Bruno at third base to score Crespo. UVa starting pitcher Artie Lewicki was able to work out the jam by strking out cleanup hitter Daniel Kassouf and after hitting Tyler Tewell, forcing Jeremy Dowdy to fly out to right field.
Virginia was on the verge of countering Appalachian State in the top of the second, but couldn’t utilize two Mountaineer errors, leaving the bases loaded with one out after Keith Werman struck out and Taylor flew out to center field, ending the threat.

The Mountaineers tacked on five more runs in the second inning to take a commanding 6-0 lead. Trey Holmes jumped on a 0-1 pitch to drive a single up the middle. Preston Troutman hit a bounding ball toward the hole on the right side, Jared King came up with the grounder but the cover by Lewicki wasn’t in time for the single. In the process of advancing to third on the play was Trey Holmes and Lewicki tried to gun the runner down. Instead the throw by the UVa hurler allowed Trey Holmes to score as an error was registered when the throw was wide of Bruno at third. Troutman advanced to second on the error and then stole third base on the next pitch. Noah Holmes singled to score Troutman to make it 4-0. Noah Holmes advanced to second when Crespo’s sacrifice bunt was successful for UVa’s first out of the inning. Burris doubled down the right field line, advancing Noah Holmes to third. Callaway was intentionally walked to load the bases. Kassouf singled through the right side to drive in Noah Holmes and Burris, while Callaway made it to third. Tewell capped the scoring for the inning with a sacrifice fly to left field, scoring Callaway.

Virginia cut its deficit in half with three runs in the top of the fourth inning. Brandon Downs led the frame off with a walk and then advanced to second on a balk. Nate Irving shot a single through the right side to move Downes to third base. Werman laid down a bunt that went for a base hit, scoring Downes. While Werman beat the throw, the ball went up the line and was charged as a throwing error by Appalachian State starter Seth Grant. Irving advanced to third on the error. Taylor singled to center field to drive in Irving. Branden Cogswell advanced the runner’s to second and third with a sacrifice bunt for the inning’s first out. Bruno ripped a ball to short and the ASU short stop Callaway tossed the ball to third to get Taylor on the tag for the innings second out, but Werman scored on the play, capping the scoring run.

The Cavaliers added another run in the sixth inning, cutting the ASU lead to two runs, 6-4. Irving doubled to right-center field after a 13-pitch at bat. Irving deposited the ball into the gap after fouling off six consecutive pitches. Werman laid down a sacrifice bunt to the right side to move Irving over to third. Taylor scored the run on a sacrifice fly to deep right field.

Virginia added another run in the top of the seventh inning, cutting its deficit down to one run, 6-5. Bruno singled through the left side to start the inning. ASU then removed the starting pitcher Grant in favor of left-handed Ryne Frankoff. Fisher then lined out to center, followed by Jared King striking out. Colin Harrington then ripped a single to right field, advancing Bruno to third. Frankoff then balked Bruno in to score when he didn’t come set on the rubber with runners at the corners.

UVa couldn’t muster any more runs despite stranding 12 runners on base for the game, including five over the last three frames. The Cavaliers closest opportunity came in the top of the eighth when ASU second baseman, Crespo, sprawled out to his right and made the snap throw to first to get Werman. That play became clutch when Bruno smacked a double to left with only one runner on. Taylor only made it to third and both runners were stranded when Derek Fisher smacked a line drive right into the mitt of centerfielder Troutman.

Bruno led the way for UVa with three hits, while Taylor and Irving each added two in the setback. Trey Holmes paced the 11-hit attack for ASU with a 3-for-4 showing. Troutman added two hits while all other ASU batter’s recorded one hit, except for Dowdy.

Grant picked up the win to improve his record to 7-3, while Nathan Hyatt came on to pitch the ninth inning, facing four batters and picking up his 16th save of the season. Lewicki was charged with the loss, dropping to 4-3 on the season.

ASU will return to action on Monday evening, facing the winner of Sunday night’s game between UVa and Oklahoma. First pitch for that contest is 4 p.m.