April 18, 2014
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - Nathan Kirby (So., Midlothian, Va.) pitched 7 2/3 innings and struck out 12, and Brandon Downes (Jr., South Plainfield, N.J.) homered and drove in all three Virginia runs in the top-ranked Cavaliers' 3-2 victory over North Carolina Friday evening in front of 4,576 at Davenport Field. Virginia improved to 32-6 overall and 15-4 in ACC play with the win.
"Obviously Nathan Kirby is locked in and continues to pitch at a very high level week after week," Virginia head coach Brian O'Connor said. "He is showing that he is a really high quality Friday night starter. He was terrific tonight. He needed to be because (Trent) Thornton is equally as good. Tonight it came down to one pass by Brandon Downes on the home run that he hit. That was great to see. I thought Downes took a lot better swings than he has. Overall, it was a very well-played game with little margin for error. I'm just glad our guys did a little bit more and handled the baseball defensively. We did what we needed to do in order to win. I would imagine that tomorrow and Sunday will be no different."
Kirby (8-1) won the showdown of the ACC's two winningest pitchers of 2014, outdueling UNC ace Trent Thornton (7-2), who worked six innings and allowed three earned runs. Kirby gave up two earned runs, six hits and two walks while striking out a dozen, the second most in his career. Kirby recorded his 10th straight quality start of the season (at least six innings pitched and three runs or fewer allowed).
Whit Mayberry (R-Sr., Alexandria, Va.) notched a key strikeout with a runner in scoring position to wrap up the eighth inning before Nick Howard (Jr., Olney, Md.) struck out the side in the ninth inning to earn his 12th save in as many opportunities. The UVa pitching trio combined to strike out 16 UNC batters.
John La Prise (So., Exton, Pa.) recorded three of Virginia's nine hits, while Downes and Howard each picked up a pair of hits. Howard scored two of UVa's runs.
Virginia struck for a pair of runs in the second inning when Downes hit a two-run home run into the left-field bleachers. The long ball, Downes' fifth of the year, also scored Howard.
North Carolina (22-16, 9-10) tied the score in the sixth inning. Skye Bolt drew a leadoff walk and moved to third with one out on a Landon Lassiter double. Parks Jordan grounded out to score Bolt, and a wild pitch allowed Lassiter to scamper home.
Virginia promptly responded in its half of the sixth. Howard ripped the first pitch to center for a single and advanced to third on a hit-and-run single from La Prise. Downes then hit a sacrifice fly to center to score Howard.
Carolina threatened in the eighth inning as Wood Myers hit a leadoff single and moved to second on a Bolt sacrifice. Kirby struck out Tom Zengel before Mayberry came on in relief to strike out Lassiter for the final out of the inning.
The second game of the series is set for 1 p.m. Saturday, while the series finale will be played at 1 p.m. Sunday. The Saturday contest will be televised by the ACC's Regional Sports Networks, including CSN Mid-Atlantic in the Charlottesville area.
Lucas Playing Key Role in TurnaroundField Hockey10/20/16Carrera Lucas' play at goalkeeper has helped No.9 Virginia, which hosts No. 7 Louisville on Friday night, win seven of its past eight games.Media Day NotebookMen's Basketball10/18/16Virginia, which advanced to the NCAA tournament's Elite Eight in 2015-16, opens the season Nov. 11 against UNC Greensboro at the Greensboro Coliseum.Reuter Ready To Take On Larger RoleMen's Basketball10/17/16A 6-7, 243-pound sophomore from Marion, Mass., Jarred Reuter is competing for a starting spot in the Cavaliers' frontcourt.
Director of News Content
A 1985 graduate of UVA, White worked at the Richmond Times-Dispatch until July 2009. He was honored six times as the state's Sportswriter of the Year.
Orange Downs Blue 8-1, Takes First Series
Baseball | 10/19/2016
The Orange team clinched the first three-game series of the 2016 Orange & Blue World Series with ...
Orange Holds Off Blue in Game 1, 8-6
Baseball | 10/12/2016
Cameron Comer went 3-for-4 with three RBI for the Orange squad, while Pavin Smith and Adam...
Orange & Blue World Series Begins Tuesday
Baseball | 10/10/2016
Seven-game series runs through Oct. 30 at Davenport Field; Game 3 moved from Oct. 16 to Oct. 21.
Virginia Baseball Announces 2017 Schedule
Baseball | 10/6/2016
2017 Schedule | The Cavaliers open their season Feb. 17-19 in Charleston, S.C., prior to...
Virginia Plays Fall Exhibition Saturday at Liberty
Baseball | 9/30/2016
Virginia and Liberty will play a fall exhibition game at noon Saturday at Liberty Baseball...
Virginia Announces 2016 Fall Baseball Schedule
Baseball | 9/15/2016
UVA's fall schedule consists of an exhibition game at Liberty on Oct. 1, as well as the team's ...
Virginia to Play Fall Exhibition Oct. 1 at Liberty
Baseball | 08/30/2016
UVA will play a fall exhibition game at Liberty on Oct. 1 at the Liberty Baseball Stadium in...
Summer Virginia Baseball Update
Baseball | 07/19/2016
Seven Cavaliers earned all-star honors, accounting for half of the 14 UVA players who are...
- Online Stores