Maryland rallies in ninth to knock off #19 UVa.
Jordan Hagel doubled home Aflredo Rodriguez with two outs in the ninth inning to rally Maryland to a 6-5 win over the No. 19 Virginia baseball team Saturday at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium in College Park, Md. The Terrapins scored twice in the ninth to come back for the win and avoid a series sweep, just after UVa had broken a 4-4 tie in the top of the ninth.
Virginia finished the regular season with a 36-16-1 record, including an 18-12 mark in the ACC. The Cavaliers have clinched the No. 4 seed at the upcoming ACC Baseball Championship, which is slated for May 23-27 in Greensboro, N.C.
Maryland (32-24, 10-20 ACC) snapped a nine-game losing streak to Virginia. The Cavaliers’ 15-game win streak in College Park, dating to 2002, also ended.
Nate Irving (Fr., Yonkers, N.Y.) picked up three hits and reached base in all four of his plate appearances. Brandon Downes (Fr., South Plainfield, N.J.) added a pair of hits for the Cavaliers.
Virginia starting pitcher Artie Lewicki (So., Wyckoff, N.J.) was impressive, going 6.2 innings and allowing four unearned runs, three hits and no walks while striking out five. It marked his fourth-consecutive start in which he worked more than 6.1 innings. Justin Thompson (Sr., Danville, Va.) took the loss and fell to 4-3 after giving up two runs in the ninth inning.
Sander Beck (6-2) claimed the win for Maryland after tossing the final 1.1 innings. Maryland starter David Carroll worked 7.2 innings, allowing four earned runs, 11 hits and two walks while fanning four.
For the third straight day, Maryland grabbed the early lead as the Terps scored an unearned run in the first inning. After a one-out single by Hagel, Tim Kiene was hit by a pitch. KJ Hockaday then hit a roller toward the mound, and Lewicki picked it up, spun and fired errantly to second base, which allowed Hagel to come around and score.
Virginia tied the game in the third inning. Irving was hit by pitch to start the frame. Keith Werman (Sr., Vienna, Va.) reached via an infield single, and Chris Taylor (Jr., Virginia Beach, Va.) singled to left-center to load the bases before Branden Cogswell (Fr., Ballston Lake, N.Y.) drew a walk to force in a run. UVa squandered the bases-loaded, none-out opportunity for more runs, as Carroll mowed through the 3-4-5 part of UVa’s lineup without allowing more damage.
The Cavaliers nosed ahead in the sixth. With one out Jared King (Sr., Radford, Va.) coaxed a four-pitch walk. Downes singled to left, and Colin Harrington (R-So., Johnstown, Pa.) reached on a fielder’s choice to put runners on the corners. Irving then grounded a single through the hole between shortstop and third base to plate King and give UVa a 2-1 edge.
Maryland again took advantage of a Virginia error to score three runs in the seventh inning and move ahead, 4-2. With a runner on first and two outs, Lewicki got Ryan Holland to hit a high, shallow fly ball to left field, but the ball was dropped by Derek Fisher (Fr., Rexmont, Pa.). Lewicki hit Kyle Convissar with a pitch, and Tomo Delp hit a slow chopper over the mound for an infield single to tie the game. Kyle Crockett (So., Poquoson, Va.) took the mound in relief, but pinch hitter Greg Olenski ripped a two-run single to center to give Maryland a 4-2 lead.
UVa staged a two-out rally to tie the game in the eighth. Harrington hit a routine grounder to second, but he hustled down the line and beat it out for a single. Irving followed with a single, and with the runners going on the 3-2 pitch, pinch hitter Kenny Towns (Fr., Burke, Va.) ripped a double to left-center to score both runners and knot the score at 4-4.
Virginia took the lead in the top of the ninth. Stephen Bruno (R-So., Audubon, N.J.) hit a first-pitch single to center to open the inning. With one out he stole second and then scampered to third when the throw sailed into center field. He scored when King cranked an 0-2 pitch to right-center for a double.
Convissar led off the Maryland ninth inning with a double to left. Delp bunted the runner to third. With the infield pulled in, pinch hitter Andrew Amaro hit a grounder up the middle that Cogswell snagged with an outstretched dive, and he threw to first to beat Amaro by a half-step, with Convissar remaining at third. Alfredo Rodriguez followed with a bloop single just over Cogswell’s glove to tie the game.
Virginia moves into postseason play next week as it competes at the ACC Baseball Championship, which begins Wednesday at NewBridge Bank Park in Greensboro, N.C. Brackets and game times will be announced later this evening.