UVA Splits Four-Game Slate, Loses Series at Florida State

The #16 Virginia Baseball Team (6-5, 2-4 ACC) would start their month of March by hosting the George Washington Colonials (2-2) then traveling for a weekend series against Florida State University (4-5, 2-4 ACC).

The Wahoo offense was absolutely electric in their non-conference matchup with GW, scoring in all but two of their eight frames at the plate. Nic Kent continued his hot start to the season, notching his 5th multi-hit game of the young season, with teammates Brendan Rivoli and Max Cotier joining him with multiple hits in the game.

 On the mound, Starting Pitcher Nate Savino retired the first 10 Colonial batters and would give up only one unearned run in his 4.2 innings of work.  By the end of the fifth inning the Cavaliers would already be up, 6-1 and wouldn’t look back, winning by a final score of 11-1. With the win, the Cavaliers have now won their last 18 mid-week matchups, an impressive streak going back to the 2019 season.

After their rout of GW, the Cavaliers would travel to Tallahassee to square off against the Seminoles. In the series opener on Friday night, pitcher Andrew Abbott continued what has been a strong 2021 campaign. The former reliever struck out 14 batters in the game, the most for a UVA Pitcher since 2014, when Nathan Kirby struck out 18 in his no-hitter against Pitt. Through four innings, Abbott appeared dominant, getting 11 of his 12 outs via the punch-out.

However, the Cavalier offense was unable to provide any run support for their pitcher, as the Wahoos would be shutout by the Seminoles, the first time Brian O’Connor’s offense failed to score a run since March 30, 2019. A two-run third inning by the Seminoles would be enough to sink the Wahoos, as they dropped the series opener 2-0.

The Virginia offense got off to a slow start Saturday afternoon, as the Cavaliers were held to just one hit through the first six innings by FSU starter Bryce Hubbart. Meanwhile the Seminoles came ready to play, scoring the first nine runs of the game, headlined by a five-run fourth inning. The Cavalier pitching staff threw a combined 11 walks, with starter Griff McGarry leading the unit with six free passes issued.

While Virginia’s offense would make a late push, scoring four runs in the seventh inning, it would not be enough to come back against the Seminoles, as FSU would go on to win by a final score of 9-4.

Sunday afternoon, the Virginia Cavalier offense struck early, as Brendan Rivoli would get the Hoos started early with an RBI double. Rivoli would strike again in the third inning, bringing home a run with a RBI single to give the Cavaliers a 2-0 lead over the Seminoles. This would be all of the run support that the Virginia pitching staff would need, as Mike Vassil turned in another solid start, going 6.1 innings and giving up just one earned run on three hits, while striking out nine Seminole hitters. 

While FSU would threaten in the eighth inning, Stephen Schoch would retire three straight batters to keep Virginia ahead 2-1. FSU would threaten once again in the ninth, getting the game-tying run to second base, but Schoch would escape the jam for his fourth save of the season. 

The Cavaliers will stay in Charlottesville this week, as they face the Richmond Spiders (5-1) this Tuesday and will welcome the Notre Dame Fighting Irish (4-2, 4-2 ACC) for Virginia’s first at-home conference series of the season.


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