#25 UVa. baseball completes sweep of Toledo

uva-logo-new2The No. 25 Virginia baseball team finished off a 3-game series sweep against Toledo Sunday afternoon with a 6-3 victory at Davenport Field. UVa. improved to 7-0 while Toledo dropped to 1-4.

Virginia relief pitcher Nathan Kirby (Fr., Midlothian, Va.) worked 2 1/3 innings out of the bullpen to earn his first college win. UVa starting pitcher Nick Howard (So., Olney, Md.) tossed four scoreless innings, giving up four hits and a walk. Cavalier starters have now pitched 29 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings and have not allowed a run in any of UVa’s five home games.

The Cavaliers recorded only three hits, yet still scratched across six runs. UVa drew eight walks, with three of those baserunners coming around to score. Derek Fisher (So., Rexmont, Pa.) hit a 3-run home run to key the offense, while six different Cavaliers scored.

Toledo starting pitcher Kyle Slack (0-1) worked five innings in taking the loss. He gave up four runs (one earned), three hits and three walks while striking out two.

The teams played three-and-a-half scoreless innings before UVa forged ahead in its half of the fourth inning. Brandon Downes (So., South Plainfield, N.J.) doubled to right-center to lead off, his ninth hit of the week. He advanced on a Joe McCarthy (Fr., Scranton, Pa.) groundout and scored on the next pitch when Kenny Towns (So., Burke, Va.) grounded out to shortstop. It marked Towns’ team-best 15th RBI of the year.

The Rockets responded in the fifth inning when James Miglin cranked a two-out solo home run off the façade of the left-field bleachers.

Virginia used the long ball to take the lead for good in its half of the fifth. All the damage came after two were out. Branden Cogswell (So., Ballston Lake, N.Y.) coaxed a walk on a 3-2 pitch, and Jared King (R-Sr., Radford, Va.) reached on a fielding error. Fisher launched the next pitch to the opposite field over the wall in left-center for his second homer of the year.

Toledo cut the lead to 4-3 in the seventh inning when Matt Delewski doubled in two runs with none out against Kirby. After Delewski was sacrificed to third base, UVa reliever Austin Young (Jr., Mechanicsville, Va.) entered the game and escaped the jam unscathed by getting Miglin to fly out short center field and Anthony Smith to ground out to Cogswell at shortstop.

Virginia added a pair of runs without the benefit of a hit in the eighth inning. The first three batters walked on a total of 13 pitches. Reed Gragnani (Sr., Richmond, Va.) then lifted a sacrifice fly to left-center, and Nate Irving (So., Yonkers, N.Y.) laid down a safety squeeze which hugged the first baseline to score another run.

The Cavaliers continue their homestand at 3 p.m. Tuesday when they play host to George Washington.

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