It's hard to say a game is a must win in March, but Virginia could not afford to drop this game on Sunday. If they did, they’d be just 3-9 in the ACC however 0-3 in season series including two against ACC Coastal competition. But starter Adam Haseley and the Virginia bats just weren't going to let that happen. Haseley was good, not great going six strong giving up four earned runs on eight hits with one walk and five strike outs. But as he’s done all year long, Haseley helped his own cause at the plate going 2-4 with two RBI and three runs scored.
Just like Friday night, the Blue Devils got things started early with the long ball. Duke used two home runs in the top of the first off Haseley to take a 3-0 lead through one half inning. Unlike Friday however, Virginia would get those runs back and more when they turned two hits, three walks, and two hit-by-pitch into five runs and took an early 5-3 lead.
Virginia picked up another run in the second thanks to a Haseley single to start things off and a Cam Simmons single to drive him home. Duke cut the lead to 6-4 in the fourth off a pair of doubles from Peter Zyla and Max Miller. Virginia answered in the sixth when Charlie Cody scored on a double by Nate Eikhoff.
Duke made things interesting in the eighth scoring on a wild pitch, pulling within 7-5. Tommy Doyle was on for the two-inning save and settled down to strike out the next two batters and preserving a two-run lead. That would allow the Hoos to break things wide open in the bottom half as they scored six runs to ensure the victory. The runs came courtesy of a wild pitch, a Haseley single, a Simmons double, and an Andy Weber triple. It gave the Hoos a 13-5 lead that would be more than enough to secure the series win.
In addition to Haseley, Simmons led the way at the plate with three hits, two RBI, and two runs scored. Eikhoff, Simmons, Ernie Clement, and Caleb Knight each had two hits for the Hoos. Doyle pitched two innings, giving up two earned runs on four hits while striking out four to earn the save.
Virginia is back in action Tuesday when they travel to The Diamond in Richmond to take on the VCU Rams. Then next weekend, the Hoos host rival Louisville in a weekend series between ACC powers.