After notching their 3rd shutout of the season on Wednesday afternoon thanks to a 14-0 win over VMI, the Virginia Cavaliers will remain at home this weekend for their first home series of the year against Cornell.
The Hoos have outscored their opponents 30-3 on the season and are holding opponents to just a .143 batting average while recording a 0.75 ERA. Only two pitchers thus far have given up runs while Devin Ortiz already has two wins on the season.
Virginia has a decent amount of past matchups with the Big Red, with the last coming in 2015 as UVA beat Cornell 5-4 in Myrtle Beach. Coach O’Connor has managed five games against Cornell during his tenure in Charlottesville amassing a 5-0 record.
The weekend will not only be Cornell’s first game of the 2022 season, it will be the first Cornell baseball game since a March 8, 2020 game against the University of South Carolina as the Ivy League cancelled all spring sports in 2021. To say nobody really knows what to expect in the Ivy League would obviously be an understatement, but D1Baseball did predict Cornell to finish at the bottom of the league this year.
At the plate they will likely be lead by a group of upperclassmen in Joe Hollerbach, Wils Guy, and Shane Russell. Though that upperclassmen will be the leading group, Cornell had the highest rated recruit in the Ivy League with outfielder Jakobi Davis. He was a top 300 recruit according to D1Baseball and chose Cornell over Stanford, Georgia Tech, and others.
The pitching staff for Cornell is even harder to grasp as they lost so much last year due to players not returning. Lefty Spencer Edewards is the only returning player who has started a game for the Big Red as he started three games in 2020 while putting together a 9.00 ERA. Of note is the lack of lefthanded pitching on the Cornell roster as their website only lists three lefthanded pitchers and one of those being a freshman.
Expectations are not that high for Cornell in 2022 and the Cavaliers seem to be playing at a high level. Anything less than a series sweep could be viewed as a disappointment.