CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – It went to extra innings for the second straight meeting, but this time the Gophers got the big hit as Virginia (6-4) fell to Minnesota (5-4) by a score of 2-1 in eight innings to close play for the Hoos at the ACC/Big 10 Challenge on Sunday (Feb. 19).
HOW IT HAPPENED
Virginia broke into the scoring column in the sixth inning when Sarah Coon scored on a sac fly to right from Jade Hylton. Coon reached on a walk and took second on a wild pitch. She then moved to third on a fly ball from Katie Goldberg to get into scoring position for the fly ball from Hylton.
With two on two outs in the seventh, Minnesota tied things with a ball driven to right field, but the go-ahead run was thrown out at the plate to end the inning. The Gophers would then take the lead for the first time on the weekend in the eighth with a two-out single to right.
Molly Grube (3-2) suffered the loss in relief as she allowed the one run on three hits in 1.0 inning of work. Grube entered in the seventh to relieve starter Eden Bigham.
Autumn Pease (3-2) picked up the relief win, working the last 2.2 innings with a walk and six strikeouts. She did not allow a hit.
NOTES ON THE DAY
• Virginia is now 2-3 all-time against the Gophers after splitting a pair of meetings this weekend.
• It was the second extra-inning game of the season for UVA who defeated Minnesota 3-0 in nine innings Saturday.
• Eden Bigham worked 6.1 innings in the start, allowing one run on two hits with five walks and seven strikeouts.
FROM HEAD COACH JO HARDIN
“I’m really proud of the fight. We’re in every game, fighting and grinding it out. Every game is one swing away. The atmosphere here today as a regional type with a lot of pressure, a lot of yelling and cheering and some big moments. The more we are in those situations, it will be better for us. Freshmen are getting used to that challenge and upperclassmen are coming through. We’re grinding and meshing and have a lot of information to go through this week as we prepare to play at home for a couple of weeks.”
UP NEXT FOR THE HOOS
Virginia will play at home for the first time this season with the Cavalier Classic at Palmer Park. Play at the weekend tournament begins on Thursday (Feb. 23) with the Hoos facing off against Longwood at 4 p.m.