UVA baseball blasted by #13 UNC, 8-1

virginia baseballNo. 13 North Carolina evened the weekend series with the UVA baseball team with an 8-1 win Saturday afternoon in front of a season-high crowd of 4,975 at Davenport Field. Virginia (22-15, 8-9 ACC) and UNC (24-11, 9-8) play the rubber game of the series at noon Sunday.

“We need to learn from this and put it behind us,” Virginia head coach Brian O’Connor said. “We have a chance to win a series tomorrow at home against a very good opponent, and it’s going to take a very good effort.”

Virginia starting pitcher Adam Haseley (So., Windermere, Fla.) worked 5 1/3 innings and gave up five runs (one earned), five hits and two walks while striking out a pair. He suffered his first defeat of the season, falling to 6-1. UNC starter J.B. Bukauskas (6-1) fired seven innings of one-run baseball, allowing just four hits and two walks while striking out 11 to earn the win.

Virginia pitchers combined to walk a season-high 10 batters, including seven over the course of the sixth and seventh innings as UNC recorded seven of its eight runs.

Virginia was limited to five hits by four UNC pitchers, with Pavin Smith (So., Jupiter, Fla.) going 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles as well as an RBI. UNC finished with seven hits.

After the pitchers battled to a stalemate through four innings, UNC struck first when Kyle Datres hit a leadoff home run to left field in the fifth.

UNC pushed across four runs – all unearned – in the sixth inning. After a leadoff Adam Pate single, Tyler Ramirez put down a bunt attempt which Haseley fumbled, leaving all hands safe. After a sacrifice bunt moved the runners over, Eli Sutherland hit a grounder to third, and the throw home by Justin Novak (So., Tokyo, Japan), hit Pate in the back and then caromed into the dugout, allowing both runners to score. The Tar Heels tacked on runs against the UVA bullpen later in the inning as Tyler Shambora (Jr., Venice, Fla.) walked in a run and Bennett Sousa (So., North Palm Beach, Fla.) balked in another.

UVA broke up the shutout in its half of the sixth as Matt Thaiss (Jr., Jackson, N.J.) drew a one-out walk and came around to score when Smith doubled to center.

Sutherland hit a three-run home run to left field in the seventh inning off Sousa to push the Tar Heels’ lead to 8-1.

The series finale will be played at noon Sunday. VirginiaSports.com will have the audio broadcast, while WINA 1070-AM and 98.9-FM also will have the radio call. A link to live statistics can be found on VirginiaSports.com.

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