BLACKSBURG, Va. – Virginia (31-21, 13-15 ACC) scored six unanswered runs in an 8-6, comeback victory over Virginia Tech (25-26, 8-20 ACC) in 11 innings at English Field on Thursday night (May 17). The Cavaliers have won eight of the last 10 meetings against the Hokies.

Highlights | Box Score (PDF)

BLACKSBURG, Va. – Virginia (31-21, 13-15 ACC) scored six unanswered runs in an 8-6, comeback victory over Virginia Tech (25-26, 8-20 ACC) in 11 innings at English Field on Thursday night (May 17). The Cavaliers have won eight of the last 10 meetings against the Hokies.
Cameron Simmons (Royersford, Pa.) scored the go-ahead run in the top of the 11th on a Virginia Tech fielding error. On the next play Zack Gelof (Rehoboth Beach, Del.) put Virginia up 8-6 when he came around to score on a double play.

The Cavaliers won their third game this season when trailing after the eighth inning and have come from behind to win in 20 of their 31 wins this season.

“I’ll say this, this is one of the better wins of our season,” head coach Brian O’Connor said. “To fall behind on the road against a really good opponent, in their ballpark, to find a way to win against that pitching staff is impressive. We’ve shown that resiliency, last weekend against Louisville we lost the first and came back and won the next two ball games. We’ve started to show some signs that we can be a special club if we stay hot.”
Five Virginia relievers combined for seven shutout innings to put the Cavaliers in position for a late-game comeback. Sophomore Kyle Whitten (Manassas, Va.) was credited with his second win in as many games after tossing a pair of clean frames. In both the ninth and 10th innings he stranded the potential game-winning run in scoring position
Lefthander Andrew Abbott (Halifax, Va.) closed out the game in the 11th with two strikeouts and induced a game-ending ground out with the Hokie runners on first and second base. Abbott recorded his second save of the season and first since April 2. The lefthander has fanned 12 batters in his last five innings pitched, a span of four appearances.
Trailing by as many as four runs, the Cavaliers began their comeback in the sixth inning. With two outs, freshman Nic Kent (Charlottesville, Va.) made the score, 6-3 with an RBI single into right center that scored Cayman Richardson (Mechanicsville, Va.). The next batter, Brendan Rivoli (Douglassville, Pa.) dropped a two-run single in front of the right fielder to make the score 6-5.
Kent and Rivoli were in the mix of the two-out, game-tying rally in the top of the eighth. Kent doubled and Rivoli was intentionally walked to put runners on first and second with Simmons at the plate. Kent and Rivoli executed a double steal to put runners on second and third. A wild pitch allowed Kent to score and tie the game. On the same play, a carom off the backstop nearly allowed Rivoli to score from second but he was called out at home on a close play that was eventually reviewed and upheld.
Rivoli drove in three runs and finished the game 2-for-5 with a walk and a stolen base. Kent recorded his team-leading 40th RBI of the year, first freshman to drive in 40 runs since Pavin Smith recorded 44 RBI in 2015.

Fellow freshman Zach Messinger (Chandler, Ind.) began the streak of seven-straight scoreless innings with two strikeouts in 1.2 innings of work. Righthander Paul Kosanovich (Temple City, Calif.) recorded two clutch inning-ending outs in 1.1. innings, stranding runners in scoring position in the sixth and seventh frames.
Working in his second-straight game, Riley Wilson (Midlothian, Va.) worked a 1-2-3 eighth inning, the first perfect frame for either team in the contest.
The series continues on Friday afternoon with the middle game of a three-game set. First pitch is slated for 3 p.m. on ACC Network Extra and WINA 98.9 FM/1070 AM.
Additional Notes
• Official game time was five hours and 30 minutes, making in the longest game in terms of time in the history of the Virginia baseball program. The previous high was a 17-inning, five-hour, 19-minute marathon against the College of Charleston on February, 26, 2006.
• The extra-inning contest was the first of the year for the Cavaliers.
• The victory was career win No. 699 for Virginia head coach Brian O’Connor.
• Making his fourth start at DH, Devin Ortiz (Irvington, N.J.) put forth a 2-for-3 effort and scored the third Virginia run of the game.
• The Cavaliers stole a season-high five bases in the game. Virginia has stolen 16 bags in its last four games.
• Cayman Richardson recorded his 11th career outfield assist when he cut down lead-off man Kevin Madden trying to extend a single into a double in the bottom of the seventh. Proved to be crucial as the Hokies put two runners on in the frame.
• Virginia was out-hit 15-14 in the contest. It marked the sixth time the Cavaliers have been out-hit and won.
• Earlier in the night, Boston College defeated Notre Dame, 10-1 to eliminate Virginia Tech from the ACC Tournament.
• Virginia starting pitcher Noah Murdock tallied his 100th strikeout of his career when he fanned the last batter in the bottom of the fourth inning. 
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