No. 10 Virginia drops series opener at Florida State, 6-4

The No. 10 Virginia baseball team lost 6-4 at Florida State Friday night in the opener of a three-game ACC series at Dick Howser Stadium. FSU homered three times, including Drew Carlton’s go-ahead, two-run blast in the sixth inning.

uva baseballVirginia (33-11, 12-10 ACC) was limited to seven hits, but had runners on base in seven innings, going 1-for-13 with runners in scoring position. Nate Eikhoff (So., Bristow, Va.) had a pair of hits and drove in a run for UVA. Adam Haseley (Jr., Windermere, Fla.) recorded an eighth-inning single to extend his hit streak to 11 games, and he has hits in 25 of his last 26 games.

UVA reliever Chesdin Harrington (So., Montpelier, Va.) took the loss and fell to 3-2 after allowing the go-ahead two-run homer in the sixth inning. He pitched 3 2/3 innings of relief. FSU reliever Chase Haney (2-2) worked a scoreless sixth inning to earn the win, while Drew Carlton fired the final 1 1/3 innings to claim his fourth save as FSU’s bullpen did not allow a run over 4 2/3 innings.

The starting pitchers had nearly identical lines. Virginia’s Daniel Lynch (So., Henrico, Va.) allowed four earned runs, five hits and two walks over 4 1/3 innings. He struck out three. FSU’s Cole Sands also worked 4 1/3 innings, allowing four runs (three earned), four hits and two walks while striking out three.

Florida State (27-16, 11-10) got off to a hot start with back-to-back homers from Dylan Busby and Jackson Lueck in the first inning.

Virginia grabbed the lead with a three-run fourth inning. After Pavin Smith (Jr., Jupiter, Fla.) drew a one-out walk, Robbie Coman (Gr., Lake Worth, Fla.) and Caleb Knight (Jr., Checotah, Okla.) hit back-to-back singles to cut the lead to 2-1. Cameron Simmons (So., Royersford, Pa.) then hit a grounder that shortstop Taylor Walls threw away, with Coman scoring on the play while Simmons and Knight moved to second and third, respectively. Eikhoff then grounded out to second, scoring Knight.

UVA manufactured another run in the fifth. Ernie Clement (Jr., Rochester, N.Y.) hit a first-pitch double to left and moved to third on an Andy Weber (So., Aurora, Ohio) groundout. FSU turned to southpaw Clayton Kwiatkowski to face Haseley, who hit a grounder to second to bring home the run.

FSU tied the game with a pair of runs in the fifth. Lynch walked the leadoff batter and was lifted after giving up a one-out RBI double to Walls. Harrington came into the game and uncorked a wild pitch to move Walls to third, and Busby then hit a run-scoring grounder to shortstop.

After a leadoff walk in the sixth, FSU grabbed the lead for good on a two-run homer to right-center from Mendoza.

UVA put its first two batters on base in the ninth inning as Simmons drew a walk following a 10-pitch at bat and Eikhoff followed with a single on the ninth pitch of his at bat. After Jake McCarthy (So., Scranton, Pa.), bunted the runners over, Carlton buckled down to get Clement to foul out and Weber to ground out to end the game.

The series continues with 1 p.m. games Saturday and Sunday.

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