The Virginia Cavaliers showed why they were regarded as a Top 5 team in the country earlier in the season. The Hoos might not have played a more well rounded game all season and it came at the perfect time dominating Army 15-1.
The Hoos got on the board early and often scoring six runs in the first and an additional four runs in the 2nd, batting around the order in each frame. By the end of the 2nd inning, Griff O’Ferrall was 2-2 with a walk, a run scored, and an RBI. Ethan Anderson and Henry Godbout added extra base hits in the first, Anderson with a 2 run home run, and Godbout with a run scoring double.
All nine batters in the Virginia starting lineup would reach at least once with O’Ferrall, Casey Saucke, and Henry Godbout all totaling three hits a piece. Godbout and Anderson would each have three RBI while Jake Gelof, Kyle Teel, and Casey Saucke would all chip in two RBI themselves.
Brian Edgington gave UVA exactly the start they needed to begin the regional. Edgington pitched a perfect five innings striking out four and only throwing 56 pitches. It seemed a bit odd at the time why Edgington was coming out, but with more games on the horizon, there is a possibility Edgington could come back and pitch in a possible game on Monday.
With the game seemingly already in hand after Edgington’s 5 innings, Coach O’Connor would take the opportunity to get the younger pitchers on the roster valuable postseason innings. Freshman Cullen McKay would walk 3 Army batters and give up the first hit, but would not give up an earned run and strike out four over two frames. Sophomore Chase Hungate would follow McKay working a perfect 8th inning and Freshman Jack O’Connor would work around a single and walk to finish the game off and secure the victory.
The 14 run victory is the biggest home NCAA Tournament victory in program history topping the 13 run win UVA had in a 17-4 victory over William & Mary in the 2016 Regional. The biggest margin of victory in postseason history from the program came in UVA’s first NCAA Tournament appearance in 1972 when the Cavaliers beat Richmond 18-2.
By winning on Friday, Virginia will await the winner of tonight’s game between East Carolina and Oklahoma. The loser of that game plays Army tomorrow at noon while the UVA game will be at 6.