Virginia Baseball did what they had to do winning their second ACC series of the season and second in a row by taking down the Clemson Tigers last weekend. After falling Friday night 1-6, the Hoos bounced back to win 8-4 and 6-5 on Saturday and Sunday respectively. The wins bring them above .500 for the first time since early March and inches them ever so closer to .500 in the ACC.
Clemson got on the board first, picking up a Friday night win in what was Virginia starter Andrew Abbott’s roughest start of the year. The Cavalier ace gave up five earned runs on eight hits and two walks in only 4.2 innings. The bats unfortunately weren’t much help. The Cavaliers notched only five hits, two of which came from Devin Ortiz as the Hoos dropped game one 6-1.
The bats woke up on Saturday as Virginia took the second game 8-4. The Cavaliers banged out 13 hits, but perhaps none bigger than the two from Centerfielder Chris Newell. Newell came into the game batting just .200 but put the game away with a three-run home run in the eighth in addition to a two-RBI triple to open the scoring for the Hoos in the second inning. Joining Newell with two hits apiece were Zack Gelof, Alex Tappen, Max Cotier, and Kyle Teel. Mike Vasil earned his team-leading fifth win of the year, going 6.1 innings giving up four earned runs on eight hits, one walk while striking out eight. Brandon Neeck got the final two outs of the seventh while Blake Bales pitched a scoreless eighth and ninth to secure the win.
Virginia continued the hot hitting on Sunday with 12 hits on their way to a 6-5 win to take the series. Gelof picked up two more hits while Teel provided the power with a two-run home run in the fourth and a two-run single in the seventh to put Virginia ahead for good. Nate Savino took over for Griff McGarry in the rotation and pitched three innings giving up two earned runs on four hits. From there is was a committee with Blake Bales picking up the win after pitching 2.2 innings of shutout ball and extending his scoreless innings streak to 27.
Overall it was a good weekend at the plate for the Cavaliers with six Cavaliers with at least three hits. Gelof and Ortiz led the way with five apiece while Teel had four and Newell, Cotier, and Brendan Rivoli each had three.
Virginia now prepares for a stretch of seven home games in their next eight—an ACC weekend series against Louisville and Duke with a road trip to VCU in between before coming home again to take on Liberty.