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Virginia Baseball sweeps Wake Forest in double header

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Virginia takes down the Demon Deacons 4-0 in the first game behind another stellar outing by Connor Jones. The bats exploded in the nightcap to help a Rosenberger-Shambora dual threat on the mound.

Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

Game 1

While the final score was 4-0, this was as much of a pitchers duel as was expected. After a rough first inning where Connor Jones had to get out of Demon Deacon two-out rally, Jones settled in to pitch 7.1 innings of six hit, shutout ball. He out-dueled Wake starter Parker Dunshee who himself had a great outing throwing eight innings, giving up four runs, three earned, on only six hits, and one walk.

Virginia got on the board in the bottom of the second when Daniel Pinero led off with a double and then was sacrificed to third on a fly out by Ryan Karstetter. Then, as is needed in games between great starting pitchers, the Hoos played small-ball as Pinero scored on Nate Eikhoff's sacrifice bunt. Virginia tacked on two more in the fourth, as the table was set by a double off the bat of Pavin Smith, who scored when Daniel Pinero reached on a  throwing error. After advancing to third on a wild pitch, Pinero scored as Karstetter came up with another sacrifice fly. Virginia got its fourth and final run in the fifth, when Adam Haseley led off the inning with a double and came around to score on a sacrifice fly by Pavin Smith. So, in all, the Hoos employed a "get em on, get em over, get em in" strategy fueled in part by leadoff doubles in the second, fourth, and fifth innings.

With the lead comfortably in hand, Jones gave way to Kevin Doherty in the top of the eighth inning after giving up a one out walk and single up the middle. Doherty got the Hoos out of the jam by inducing a fielder's choice for the second out, the a fly out to end the inning and end the rally. Things got a little dicey in the ninth when Doherty gave up a lead off double, but Alec Bettinger came in and after walking the first batter he faced, got a double play ball, then struck out the next batter to preserve the 4-0 win.

Adam Haseley continued to swing a hot bat leading the Hoos at the plate with three hits. Pinero scored two runs, while Pavin Smith had a hit, one run scored, and one run batted in.

Game 2

In the nightcap Coach O'Connor threw a wrinkle into the starting rotation running out 4th year David Rosenberger.  After seeing hard throwing righty Connor Jones for 7.1 innings in Game 1, soft(er) throwing lefty Rosenberger probably seemed like night and day. And even though he has been used out of the pen for almost his entire UVa career, Rosenberger turned in an excellent start giving UVa 5 strong innings and holding Wake Forest to just 4 runs on 4 hits and a walk while striking out six.

The Cavalier bullpen has been suspect at best this season, but JUCO transfer Tyler Shambora could be a key piece the rest of the season. Friday night, he shored up UVa's 4th ACC win of the season holding Wake scoreless over the final four innings and earning his 2nd win of the season.

The bats exploded in the second game as well with 11 hits, lead by leadoff Adam Haseley's 4-5 night. Three of those four hits went for extra bases with a triple in the fourth and sixth innings and a double just  for good measure. Ernie Clement was a solid addition to Haseley's night with two hits of his own and an RBI and run scored.

The Cavaliers closed out the game with a 6-4 win to move their ACC record to 4-1 and 15-5 overall. They'll go for the sweep on Saturday to try and keep pace with UNC and Miami who are taking on Duke and Louisville respectively.