Streaking UVA completes weekend sweep of North Carolina

unc-uva2It was a distinct possibility that the UVA baseball season could come to an end in Chapel Hill this weekend. After Virginia’s 8-2 win on Saturday completed a three-game sweep of UNC, the Cavs are no longer thinking about just getting an NCAA Tournament invite.

David Rosenberger got the win on a staff day on the mound, and a five-run sixth proved crucial for the ‘Hoos (33-19, 15-15 ACC), who have now won five straight.

And it looks like North Carolina (32-22, 13-16 ACC) is the team on the brink of having an early end to its 2015 season.

Both the Cavs and the Tar Heels will play in Tuesday’s play-in games at the ACC Tournament. The winners of the two matchups – pitting the seven and ten seeds in one game, and the eight and nine seeds in the second game – will join the top six teams in the conference in pool play that begins Wednesday.

Virginia, with an RPI of 21 entering play on Saturday, would seem to be a lock for the NCAA Tournament win or lose on Tuesday. The ceiling for the Cavs could be as high as a #1 seed in regional play, if UVA were to run the table through the play-in game, pool play and the ACC title game.

Based on that RPI, it would seem that Virginia is more likely a two seed in the NCAA Tournament, which would send the ‘Hoos on the road for the first weekend of tournament play for the first time since 2009, the year UVA made its first appearance in the College World Series.

Carolina had an RPI of 24 entering play on Saturday, a strong enough RPI for an at-large bid, but with a 13-16 conference mark, the Heels could ill-afford a one-and-done run in Durham next week.

UNC thus had everything on the line on Saturday in its home finale, but didn’t play like that was the case. Virginia had to go Johnny Allstaff after using Josh Sborz to close out Friday’s 6-2 win, and the committee of Adam Haseley, Rosenberger and Kevin Doherty were more than up to the task.

Haseley started and put up two scoreless innings, giving up two hits with a strikeout and one walk. Rosenberger (2-0) went four innings, giving up two runs on four hits, with three Ks and two free passes.

Doherty notched his third save of the season with three 1-2-3 innings, striking out four of the nine UNC hitters that he faced.

Matt Thaiss, Robbie Coman and Joe McCarthy each had three hits to key the 16-hit UVA offensive attack.

UVA has clinched the seven seed in the ACC Tournament, which means the Cavs will play the 10 seed, yet to be determined, at a time yet to be determined.

– Story by Chris Graham


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