CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. Matt Packer (So., Germantown, Tenn.) scattered five hits and gave up one run over a career-best seven innings in propelling the No. 28 Virginia baseball team to a 4-2 win over Georgia Tech Thursday night in the series opener at Davenport Field.
John Barr (Fr., Ivyland, Pa.) posted a career-high three hits, while Franco Valdes (So., Miami, Fla.) added two for Virginia. UVa had nine hits on the evening, compared to six for the Yellow Jackets, who received two hits each from Luke Murton and Derek Dietrich.
Packer (6-2), who was making his fourth start of 2008, topped his previous career best of six innings which he had set three times previously. He did not walk a batter and struck out seven. Andrew Carraway (Jr., Marietta, Ga.) pitched a perfect eighth inning, and Michael Schwimer (Sr., Alexandria, Va.) allowed a run in the ninth but rebounded to notch his ACC-best 12th save.
Georgia Tech starter David Duncan (7-3) pitched six innings and gave up three runs (one earned), eight hits and four walks while striking out five in absorbing the loss.
Georgia Tech (36-17, 14-14 ACC) grabbed the initial lead as Dietrich singled to plate Murton, who had doubled to lead off the inning.
After squandering some early chances, Virginia (36-17, 15-13) put up a run in the fourth inning on a Tyler Cannon (So., Pigeon Forge, Tenn.) sacrifice fly after UVa loaded the bases with no outs on three straight singles, including bunt hits from Valdes and Barr. Virginia then left the bases loaded in the inning, one of four times the Cavaliers left the bases full in the game. UVa stranded 15 runners on base in tying a season high.
The Cavaliers took the lead for good with two runs in the sixth inning. UVa loaded the bases with one out, and after a Patrick Wingfield (Sr., Winchester, Va.) strikeout, David Adams (Jr., Margate, Fla.) reached on a throwing error that allowed two runs to score and push the Cavaliers ahead, 3-1.
UVa tacked on a run in the seventh inning when Barr recorded his third hit of the night, a single through a drawn-in infield to plate Phil Gosselin (Fr., West Chester, Pa.).
Georgia Tech scored a run in the ninth inning on a Tony Plagman sacrifice fly off of Schwimer, but the Cavalier closer rallied to strike out Thomas Nichols looking to end the game.
The teams will play the second game of the series at 6 p.m. Friday and wrap up the three-game set with a noon contest Saturday. Please note the Saturday game time has been moved up one hour from the original 1 p.m. start time.
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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.
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