#4 UVa. baseball evens series at Georgia Tech
Scott Silverstein (R-Sr., Olney, Md) allowed a run and two hits over seven strong innings as the fourth-ranked Virginia baseball team cruised to a 7-2 victory at No. 17 Georgia Tech Saturday afternoon at Russ Chandler Stadium in Atlanta. Silverstein (6-0) struck out nine and walked two in tying his career-long effort as UVa. (31-5, 13-4 ACC) evened the series at a game apiece.
Virginia pitchers combined to strike out 12 batters and allow just four hits. Austin Young (Jr., Mechanicsville, Va.) and Whit Mayberry (R-Jr., Alexandria, Va.) each worked an inning to finish off the victory. Georgia Tech starter Dusty Isaacs (4-3) took the loss after giving up five earned runs and seven hits over four innings. The Yellow Jackets (25-10, 10-7) used eight pitchers in the contest.
Derek Fisher (So., Rexmont, Pa.) and Reed Gragnani (Sr., Richmond, Va.) each had three hits and three RBI for the Cavaliers, who picked up a dozen hits. The Cavaliers had runners on base in each of the final eight innings.
Virginia jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the second inning. After Brandon Downes (So., South Plainfield, N.J.) and Mike Papi (So., Tunkhannock, Pa.) hit consecutive singles to open the inning, Fisher doubled to right-center to plate a run. With one out Gragnani hit a sacrifice fly to left to score Papi.
UVa doubled its lead in the third. Branden Cogswell (So., Ballston Lake, N.Y.) led off with a single and moved to third on a hit-and-run single by Jared King (R-Sr., Radford, Va.). One out later Downes grounded into a fielder’s choice to bring Cogswell across the plate. After Papi walked, Fisher blooped a single to left to score Downes from second.
The Cavaliers extended their lead to 5-0 in the fourth on a solo home run to right field by Gragnani, his second in five games after not recording a long ball in his first 129 career contests.
Gragnani drove in his third run of the game in the seventh inning, singling in Papi with two outs.
Georgia Tech broke up Silverstein’s shutout bid in the bottom of the seventh when Daniel Palka homered over the right-center field wall. It ended a streak of 13 consecutive batters retired by the Virginia left-hander.
The Cavaliers tacked on an insurance run in the ninth when Fisher lined a home run over the right-center field wall, his fourth homer of the season. Georgia Tech added a final tally in its half of the ninth on a two-out Palka RBI single off Mayberry.
The teams conclude the series at 1 p.m. Sunday. The game will be broadcast by Comcast Sports Southeast; CSN Mid-Atlantic and Baltimore each will pick up the broadcast. WINA 1070-AM will have the local radio coverage.