May 24, 2006
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - -
Sean Doolittle struck out nine in picking up his 11th win and Brandon Guyer drove in three runs going 2-for-4 with his seventh home run as No. 3 seed Virginia defeated No. 6 seed Florida State, 6-2, Wednesday morning in the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament opener at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville. Greg Miclat went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and Casey Lambert recorded his 10th save of the season.
"That was a great way to start off the tournament," UVa head baseball coach Brian O'Connor said. "We made a lot of clutch pitches down the stretch and had some clutch hitting. Our guys showed a lot of patience on the mound and at the plate. We faced one of the top pitchers in the conference. Our players have taken a business-like approach all season. I haven't had to do much to motivate them, and they definitely showed that today in the first game of this tournament. They were ready to go and came away with a victory."
Doolittle ran his record to 11-1, which leaves him one win away from tying the school record for single-season wins. He has 42 strikeouts in his last four starts and became only the sixth Cavalier all-time to record at least 100 strikeouts in a season. He allowed one run on four hits in six innings before giving way to Michael Schwimer, who allowed a run on two hits in 1 2/3 innings. Schwimer struck out four. Lambert tossed the final 1 1/3 innings and struck out two of the five batters he faced. Mike Mitchell and Tom Hagan both had added a hit for the Cavaliers. Bryan Henry (9-3) pitched seven strong innings for the Seminoles, as he allowed six runs, five earned, on five hits. Eight different Seminoles had at least one hit.
Virginia added a pair of insurance runs in the bottom of the eighth for the 6-2 lead. After Miclat led off with single to center field and Brandon Marsh walked, Doolittle bunted the runners over. David Adams was intentionally walked to load the bases. Guyer slapped a single through the left side to bring in Miclat and Marsh to make it, 6-2.
Buster Posey's RBI single to center field scored Shane Robinson bringing the Seminoles within, 4-2, in the top of the eighth. After a two-out double by Tony Thomas put runners on second and third for Florida State, Lambert struck out Ryne Malone to get out of the jam.
The Cavaliers scored a run without a hit in the bottom of the fifth. Mitchell and Miclat both walked with one out. After UVa executed a double steal, Mitchell scored on a throwing error by the catcher to put the Cavs ahead, 4-0.
Rye's solo home run down the right field line in the top of the sixth brought the Seminoles within, 4-1.
Marsh's sacrifice fly in the bottom of the third put Virginia ahead, 2-0. Mitchell scored after he doubled down the left field line and scored on an error. Guyer hit a solo home run over the left field wall in the bottom of the fourth putting the Hoos ahead, 3-0.
Virginia used a sacrifice fly from Doolittle in the bottom of the first to take a 1-0 lead. Miclat had an infield single and stole second. After a Marsh's ground ball moved Miclat to third, Doolittle flied out to left field giving the Cavs the early lead.
The Cavaliers will play NC State at 4 p.m. in Thursday in the winner's bracket game. Freshman right-hander Jacob Thompson will start for Virginia, while NC State will start Eryk McConnell.