Virginia Starts Home Schedule at 2 p.m. Tuesday vs. VMI
Feb. 22, 2016
|VMI (2-2) at No. 4 Virginia (2-1)
|Tue., Feb. 22, 2 p.m.
|Charlottesville, Va. | Davenport Field
|Live Audio | GameTracker
|Twitter: @UVABaseball | O’Connor Twitter | Facebook | Instagram
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — The Virginia baseball team returns home to Davenport Field for its 2016 home opener Tuesday when it takes on VMI. Originally scheduled for a 3 p.m. start, the game has been moved to 2 p.m. because of anticipated inclement weather.
The game marks the beginning of 10-game homestand over the next 16 days.
The audio for the game will air on VirginiaSports.com and is available through a Cavaliers Live subscription. A link to live statistics also can be found on VirginiaSports.com.
In the latest rankings, Virginia remained No. 4 in the Baseball America poll and No.9 in the Collegiate Baseball poll and moved up to No. 11 in the D1Baseball rankings.
Things to Know
Â• UVA went 13-10 at home during a weather-plagued 2015 season — the program’s fewest home wins in a season since 2002.
Â• Virginia is 353-83 (.810) at home under Brian O’Connor.
Â• Virginia has 15 freshmen on the roster — most in Brian O’Connor‘s UVA tenure. Seven saw playing time during the opening weekend.
Â• VMI has won the last two meetings against UVA.
Â• Matt Thaiss hit a team-best .346 in home games last year.
Â• Neither team has announced a starting pitcher.
What’s New at Davenport Field
Fans will notice an array of enhancements to Davenport Field this season, with several to commemorate Virginia’s 2015 National Championship. Among the additions and changes:
Â• A new backlit sign hangs below the scoreboard in right-center field, honoring the 2015 National Champions
Â• A new trophy case to showcase the 2015 NCAA Championship trophy on the concourse level
Â• New signage to honor UVA’s CWS teams and ACC championship teams located beneath the press box
Â• New NCAA championship murals on the back of the right-field bleachers as well as the faÃ§ade of the suite level on the first-base side of the stadium
Â• Higher protective netting that extends throughout the entire blue-seat reserved section
Â• All of the bleacher seats have been painted blue
Â• New padding and signage on the outfield wall
Â• With the new padding and yellow stripe at the top of the padding, the Blue Monster in center field no longer is in play (balls hitting off the wall above the yellow line are now home runs)
Â• The foul poles also have been painted yellow, per NCAA rules
Â• A plaque commemorating the 2015 NCAA Championship team has been installed on the concourse along the third-base line
Noting the Opening Weekend
Virginia opened its season by going 2-1 at the Caravelle Resort Tournament in Myrtle Beach. UVA opened with an 8-6 win over Kent State and an 8-0 victory over Appalachian State before suffering a 5-4 defeat to No. 23 Coastal Carolina on Sunday.
Ernie Clement (So., Rochester, N.Y.) recorded an ACC-high eight hits over the season’s opening weekend, going 8-for-15 (.533). Pavin Smith (So., Jupiter, Fla.) also was hot, going 7-for-11 (.636), while Matt Thaiss went 6-for-13 (.462).
UVA’s defense also was stellar as the Cavaliers did not commit an error in any of the three contests.
VMI opened its season last weekend by going 2-2 in a tournament at Wake Forest. The Keydets split a doubleheader with UMBC before blanking Georgetown, 4-0. VMI finished the weekend with an 8-4 loss to Wake Forest.
VMI was 21-30 last season, including a 12-12 mark in the Southern Conference. The Keydets return 18 letterwinners, including five position starters, from their 2015 team. Eleven newcomers have joined the team for 2016.
UVA leads the all-time series with VMI, 102-31, although the Keydets have won back-to-back games against the Cavaliers at Davenport Field, including a 7-6 decision last February. Four of the last five games between the teams have been decided by two runs or fewer.
Virginia plays East Carolina in a three-game series this weekend at Davenport Field. The teams will face off at 3 p.m. Friday and 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.