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Feb. 23, 2013

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The No. 25 Virginia baseball won its sixth straight game to start the 2013 season Saturday, downing Toledo, 5-0, at Davenport Field. Scott Silverstein (R-Sr., Olney, Md.) and Whit Mayberry(Sr., Alexandria, Va.) combined on a five-hitter as the Cavaliers (6-0) recorded their second straight shutout against the Rockets (1-3).

“That was a great college baseball game,” Virginia head coach Brian O’Connor said. “Scott Silverstein and Whit Mayberrypitched like veterans, like they should. Most importantly, in a game like this, we played really spectacular defense. We didn’t have any errors and we handled the ball on the infield, which was really important. I’m happy with how our guys handled the situation. I thought (Kyle) Shaw was really good. Our offensive approach against him was really good. We squared some balls up, but unfortunately weren’t able to push any runs across early.”

The series finale is scheduled for 1 p.m. Sunday. Baseball parking Sunday will be available only in the Emmet/Ivy Garage; parking in the University Hall, John Paul Jones Arena and McCue lots will be limited to fans attending the men’s basketball game.

In the second-longest start of his career, Silverstein (1-0) worked 6 1/3 innings to notch the win. He gave up four hits and two walks while recording four strikeouts. Virginia starting pitchers now have recorded four straight scoreless starts, with a streak of 25 1/3 straight scoreless innings dating to last Saturday.

Mayberry pitched the final 2 2/3 innings to earn the save, the second of his career. He gave up only one hit while striking out four. Only two Toledo baserunners reached second base all day as Virginia claimed back-to-back shutouts for the first time since March 22-23, 2011, in a pair of games against Towson.

Shaw (1-1) matched Silverstein zero for zero until the sixth inning when he gave up his first run in 11 innings this season. He allowed just a run, four hits and a walk while fanning two in taking the loss.

UVa’s four- and five-hole hitters did much of the damage at the plate. Cleanup hitter Brandon Downes (So., South Plainfield, N.J.) led Virginia at the plate with a 2-for-3 day, including a 3-run home run. Kenny Towns(So., Burke, Va.) also went 2-for-3 with a double and triple.

The teams played five quick, scoreless innings before Virginia broke the stalemate with a two-out rally in the sixth inning. Downes coaxed a five-pitch walk, and Towns cranked the next pitch up the left-center field gap for a run-scoring triple.

The Cavaliers got some breathing room in the eighth inning with four runs against reliever Andrew Marra. Branden Cogswell (So., Ballston Lake, N.Y.) drew a leadoff walk and Derek Fisher (So., Rexmont, Pa.) was issued a one-out intentional walk following a sacrifice bunt. Downes then launched Marra’s first pitch over the left-center field wall for a 3-run home run, his second homer of the year. Towns doubled two pitches later to right-center and scored when Joe McCarthy (Fr., Scranton, Pa.) singled to right.

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