Virginia Proves Status With Win Over Liberty - - ABC13

Virginia Proves Status With Win Over Liberty

From LU athletics:

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. –Virginia right-hander Artie Lewicki pitched seven scoreless innings, as the No. 1 Cavaliers defeated the No. 22 Liberty Flames, 8-2, Wednesday evening at Davenport Stadium. Lewicki held the Flames to one hit, a single by second baseman Ryan Seiz, during the first seven innings, allowing the host Cavaliers to build a 7-0 advantage.

Liberty drops to 35-11 on the season. Virginia moves to 38-9 on the year.

The host Cavaliers struck for the first two runs of the contest in the bottom of the second inning. Designated hitter Nick Howard was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and moved to second base on a sacrifice bunt by second Branden Cogswell. Third baseman Kenny Towns followed by lining a double down the left field line, plating Howard for a 1-0 advantage. Two batters later, catcher Nate Irving dropped a two-out single into left-center field to score Towns for a 2-0 lead.

Virginia added three runs in its next at bat. The Cavaliers loaded the bases with one out to open the home half of the third and after a Liberty pitching change, used a sacrifice fly by Cogswell to take a 3-0 edge. Towns followed with a two-run single to center field, upping Virginia lead to 5-0.

In the fourth, Virginia plated two more runs, scoring for the third consecutive inning. Right fielder Joe McCarthy scored Irving, who led off the frame with a double. Later in the inning, the Cavaliers used a double steal to plate another run for a 7-0 advantage.

Liberty broke through against Virginia reliever Connor Jones for two runs in the top of the eighth. With two outs, Jake Kimble, who entered the game in bottom of the sixth as a defensive replacement, walked and moved to second on a single by center fielder Ashton Perritt. Left fielder Nick Lacik followed by slicing a triple into the right-center field gap to make it, 7-2, Virginia.

The Cavaliers pushed across a run in the bottom of the inning. A single by first baseman Mike Papi scored Cogswell for what proved to be the final score of 8-2.

Liberty starting pitcher Jared Lyons falls to 2-4 on the season. The left-hander gave up five runs on five hits over 2 1/3 innings. The first of six Flames to pitch in the contest, he walked one batter.

Lewicki moves to 4-1 on the year. One of three Cavaliers to pitch in the contest, he struck out six batters and walked one.

Liberty collected four hits in the game, with Lacik’s triple the only extra base hit for the Flames in the contest. Virginia had nine hits.

Liberty next hosts the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers for a three-game Big South series, this weekend. The series opens is Friday at Liberty Baseball Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m.

From UVa athletics:

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Behind seven innings of shutout, one-hit work from starting pitcher Artie Lewicki (Sr., Wyckoff, N.J.), the No. 1-ranked Virginia baseball team rolled to an 8-2 win over No. 22 Liberty Wednesday evening at Davenport Field. In the Cavaliers’ first game back after seven days off for final exams, the game drew 4,354 fans, a UVa record for a home midweek contest.

“I thought that overall was one of the better offensive approaches that we’ve had this year,” Virginia head coach Brian O’Connor said. “Tonight we were as opportunistic as we’ve been for quite some time. It was great to see. Our players trusted the plan tonight and a lot of guys did a great job with two strikes, battling and putting balls in play. Coming out of final exams and not playing a game in seven days, you’re always a little anxious about how we’re going to come out, but certainly tonight we did well.”

Lewicki (4-1) tied a career high by pitching seven innings, his most since May 26, 2012 against Florida State. He allowed just one hit and one walk while striking out six. Lewicki retired the final 11 batters he faced.

Liberty starter Jared Lyons (2-4) worked 2 1/3 innings, giving up five earned runs, five hits and a walk in taking the loss.

Virginia (38-9) finished with nine hits, while Nate Irving (Jr., Yonkers, N.Y.), Mike Papi (Jr., Tunkhannock, Pa.) and Kenny Towns (Jr., Burke, Va.) each recorded a pair. Towns drove in three runs with two run-scoring hits.

UVa came out swinging early and tallied a pair of second-inning runs. Leadoff hitter Nick Howard (Jr., Olney, Md.) was plunked with a pitch. After advancing on a Branden Cogswell (Jr., Ballston Lake, N.Y.) sacrifice bunt, Howard scored when Towns bounced a double down the left-field line. With two outs Irving singled to left-center to bring Towns around to score.

The Cavaliers pushed their lead to 5-0 with a three-run third inning. Virginia loaded the bases with one out, prompting Liberty to make a pitching change and bring in Shawn Clowers. Cogswell hit a sacrifice fly to right-center, with all three runners advancing. That proved key when Towns lined a single to center, scoring Joe McCarthy (So., Scranton, Pa.) and Howard.

Virginia added a pair of runs in the fourth inning. With the bases loaded and one out, McCarthy hit a check-swing dribbler to third base and reached on a fielder’s choice, with Irving scoring. Virginia then combined on a double steal, with McCarthy swiping second while Papi scored as the throw to second was bobbled.

Liberty (35-11) broke up the shutout on a two-out, two-run triple from Nick Lacik in the eighth inning. UVa responded with a run in its half of the eighth when Papi singled home Cogswell with two outs.

Virginia remains home Friday through Sunday (May 9-11) with its final home ACC series against Georgia Tech; the Cavaliers will hold Senior Day ceremonies at 11:40 a.m. Sunday prior to the noon game.

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