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Brandon Waddell and Josh Sborz were the story on Monday when UVa defeated Florida the first time.
This time, it was pretty similar, but they'd get a little help from Danny Pinero, Pavin Smith, Matt Thaiss, and Kenny Towns to defeat the Gators a second time to advance to the program's second ever and second straight Championship Series appearance.
Brandon Waddell started the game for the Hoos and gave it everything he had. He gave Coach O'Connor 5 strong innings and held the Gators to just 3 runs in those 5 innings. Unfortunately, he ran into some trouble in the 6th and was relieved by lights out reliever, Josh Sborz.
Sborz gave up a 4th run in the 6th when he came on, but would hold Florida at bay the rest of the game. Over the final 3 innings he only allowed two Florida base runners to reach via singles.
UVa got on the board in the first thanks to Matt Thaiss's 10th HR of the season to give UVa a 1-0 lead. Sadly, Florida kept coming back and would have the game tied in the 7th at 4.
In the 7th Ernie Clement lead off with a single and Adam Haseley followed up with a walk. After Pinero bunted the runners over, Florida would walk Matt Thaiss to load the bases and bring up Mr. June, Kenny Towns. Towns would go on to do what he has done all NCAA Tournament long. He came through and hit a fly ball to the outfield deep enough to score Clement and give UVa the 5-4 lead.
The win gives UVa their 2nd straight appearance in the NCAA Championship Series in as many years. They'll face a familiar foe as well as they'll get to try and avenge last year's loss against Vanderbilt.
On a personal note, this is really unbelievable. At the beginning of May I did not think they'd even make the ACC Tournament, let alone the NCAA Tournament. And yet, here they are in the NCAA Championship Series, two wins away from a National Title. It truly is a testament to how amazing this staff is.
The Championship Series starts on Monday night on ESPN at 8pm.