Home We’re headed back to Omaha! UVA defeats K State, 10-4, to advance to College World Series
Sports

We’re headed back to Omaha! UVA defeats K State, 10-4, to advance to College World Series

Recap: Woolfolk pitches Virginia into CWS

uva baseball dogpile
Photo: Chris Graham/AFP

Jay Woolfolk, for the second time in a week, pitched his heart out in a closeout game for #12 Virginia, this time pitching into the seventh, leaving with a 4-3 lead, and with a five-run ninth, the ‘Hoos beat Kansas State, 10-4, to advance to the 2024 College World Series.

Woolfolk (4-1, 5.79 ERA) held K State to three runs on six hits, striking out seven and walking two.

Last week, Woolfolk pitched into the ninth in a 9-2 win over Mississippi State that clinched a spot in the Super Regional round for UVA (46-15), giving up two runs on eight hits, striking out seven and walking one.

Not bad for a guy who had lost his spot in the starting rotation after a run of bad outings in February and March, and didn’t start again until last weekend.

Casey Saucke hit a first-inning homer for Virginia, which never trailed, but it was a nail-biter into the ninth.

A Kyan Lodice solo shot brought Kansas State (35-26) back to down 5-4 in the eighth, but Chase Hungate was able to retire the side in order after that to maintain the one-run lead into the ninth.

Virginia got some needed insurance on a two-out, two-run triple by Jacob Ference, and then after loading the bases, pinch-hitter Luke Hanson laced a double down the left-field line that cleared them.

Hungate put up a 1-2-3 ninth to close it out, getting Chuck Ingram to strike out to end it.

Virginia advances to its seventh College World Series, and third in the past four years.

The opening game of the 2024 CWS is Friday, June 14.


Video

Link to celebration video on YouTube.


Live Coverage

Virginia (45-15) defeated Kansas State (35-25) 7-4 in Game 1 of the Charlottesville Super Regional on Friday, and now the ‘Hoos have a chance to punch their ticket to Omaha with a win on Saturday in Game 2.

UVA will start Jay Woolfolk (3-1, 6.15 ERA, 1.73 WHIP, 57Ks/35BBs in 52.2 IP), the Most Outstanding Player in the Charlottesville Regional, against Mississippi State, which is going with Jackson Wentworth (5-5, 4.11 ERA, 1.10 WHIP, 110Ks/25BBs in 81.0 IP) as its starting pitcher.

Woolfolk was dominant in the 9-2 win over Mississippi State on Sunday, holding the Bulldogs to two runs, on a first-inning two-run homer from Dakota Jordan, on eight hits, striking out eight and walking two.

Wentworth, a projected fifth-round 2024 MLB Draft pick, was solid in the win over Arkansas on Saturday night – allowing two runs on seven hits in five and two-thirds innings, striking out three and walking three.

First inning

Casey Saucke gets Virginia on the board first with a two-out solo homer to left-center.

A two-out single by Henry Ford, a walk to Jacob Ference and then an RBI single from Harrison Didawick makes it 2-0 ‘Hoos.

Mid-1: UVA 2, K State 0.


A leadoff walk to Brendan Jones, who stole second and advanced to third on a sac bunt, led to a sac-fly RBI from Kaelen Culpepper on an 0-2 slider.

End 1: UVA 2, K State 1

Second inning

Wentworth put Virginia down in order in the second. He’s at 33 pitches through two innings.

Mid-2: UVA 2, K State 1


An RBI groundout by Jaden Parsons ties the game at 2-2. Nick English and David Bishop had singled to start the inning.

Woolfolk did a good job pitching out of that. K State had runners on second and third and no outs, and only got the one run.

Through two, Woolfolk is at 37 pitches.

He’s not sharp right now.

End 2: UVA 2, K State 2.

Third inning

Nothing doing for UVA in its half of the third.

Ethan Anderson walked to lead off the inning, but was the third out on an attempted delayed steal.

Mid-3: UVA 2, K State 2.


Woolfolk worked around a two-out defensive miscue that went as a flyball double from Culpepper, on a ball misplayed by Didawick, who should have called off Griff O’Ferrall at shortstop on a high popup with two outs.

Woolfolk got Brady Day to pop up to third, with Eric Becker making that play much more interesting than it needed to be.

End 3: UVA 2, K State 2.

Fourth inning

UVA goes down 1-2-3 in its half of the fourth.

Wentworth has retired nine of the last 10 UVA hitters, dating back to the Didawick RBI single in the first.

Mid-4: UVA 2, K State 2


Woolfolk sets the side down in order, and he has retired nine of the last 10 K State hitters, with only the two-out pop-fly double from Culpepper breaking that up.

End 4: UVA 2, K State 2.

Fifth inning

Henry Ford knocked in two with a bases-loaded, two-out single to put UVA on top, 4-2.

Virginia had loaded the bases with nobody out on a Becker leadoff double and back-to-back infield singles by Bobby Whalen and O’Ferrall.

Mid-5: UVA 4, K State 2


Brendan Jones answers for K State with a two-out solo shot, his 10th homer of the season.

Kyan Lodice tripled to the gap in left-center, bringing up Culpepper, who has a flyball double and a sac fly RBI.

Woolfolk got Culpepper to line out to the fence in left-center. Nice running catch there by Whalen.

End 5: UVA 4, K State 3


Sixth inning

Wentworth pitched around a one-out Henry Godbout single.

Woolfolk is back out for the sixth at 81 pitches, and the last three contacts off him being frozen ropes.

I officially question this move.

Mid-6: UVA 4, K State 3.


Shows what I know. Woolfolk retired the side in order, and struck out the first two K State hitters.

He’s at 91 pitches through six.

Pete Hughes is going to his closer, Ty Neighbors, he of 60 Ks in 36.2 IP.

End 6: UVA 4, K State 3.

Seventh inning

Virginia worked two walks off Neighbors, but Anderson got picked off, and then Ford flew out to the track in left on a 3-0 pitch, so, nothing doing for UVA in the seventh.

Woolfolk is back out for the seventh.

Can I still object?

Stretch time: UVA 4, K State 3


A leadoff walk to Parsons didn’t hurt, because Parsons was caught trying to steal second.

Chuck Ingram laced a 3-2 fastball to the wall in center for a double.

O’Connor comes out for Woolfolk in favor of Angelo Tonas (3-0, 3.79 ERA, 1.35 WHIP), who pitched an inning and a third last night.

Runner on second, one down, pinch-hitter Danniel Rivera up, then the top of the order.

Great work by Tonas, who got two popups to center to end it.

End 7: UVA 4, K State 3.

Eighth inning

Two-out walk to Godbout, then a RBI double to right-center by Becker, and it’s 5-3 ‘Hoos.

Mid-8: UVA 5, K State 3.


Kyan Lodice, who tripled earlier, just homered to center, and it’s 5-4 Virginia.

O’Connor comes out for Tonas, going to Chase Hungate (7-1, 3.86 ERA, 1.22 WHIP).

Hungate did his job, retiring the three hitters he faced in order.

Josh Wintroub (2-4, 5.93 ERA, 1.54 WHIP, 56Ks/13BBs in 54.2 IP) in for K State.

End 8: UVA 5, K State 4

Ninth inning

Jacob Ference provides some breathing room with a two-out triple to right-center, scoring Saucke and Anderson.

Hughes goes to lefty JJ Slack (2-1, 4.32 ERA, 1.44 WHIP).

Eric Becker, pinch hitting, laces a three-run double down the left-field line. It’s 10-4 UVA.

Mid-9: UVA 10, K State 4


Hungate retired K State in order in the bottom of the ninth.

Wahoowa!

Chris Graham

Chris Graham

Chris Graham, the king of "fringe media," is the founder and editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1994 alum of the University of Virginia, Chris is the author and co-author of seven books, including Poverty of Imagination, a memoir published in 2019, and Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, and The Worst Wrestling Pay-Per-View Ever, published in 2018. For his commentaries on news, sports and politics, go to his YouTube page, or subscribe to his Street Knowledge podcast. Email Chris at [email protected].