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No. 3 Virginia Baseball Takes Series Opener Over Boston College, 8-1

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Behind 6 1/3 shutout innings from Nathan Kirby (So., Midlothian, Va.), the third-ranked Virginia baseball team rolled to an 8-1 victory over Boston College Friday at Davenport Field. Virginia (13-3, 3-1 ACC) came within an out of a shutout as five Cavalier pitchers limited BC (6-10, 0-4) to six hits.

Virginia's offense racked up 14 hits, and the bottom third of the batting order, Nate Irving (Jr., Yonkers, N.Y.), Kenny Towns (Jr., Burke, Va.) and John La Prise (So., Exton, Pa.), combined to go 9-for-11 with five RBI and five runs scored while each had three hits. UVa became the first team to score more than six runs against Boston College this season.

In working 6 1/3 innings, Kirby (5-0) tied a career long and made his fifth straight start of six-plus innings. He allowed four hits and a walk and struck out four as he recorded his fifth quality start of the season. Kirby has not allowed an earned run in 21 consecutive innings, lowering his ERA to 0.59.

Boston College starter John Garman (2-3) pitched four innings, giving up four earned runs and eight hits while striking out a pair in absorbing the loss.

After leaving a runner at third base in the first inning, Virginia broke through with a second-inning run. Joe McCarthy (So., Scranton, Pa.) doubled to left-center to open the inning. One out later, he moved to third on an Irving groundout and then scored when Towns beat out a slow roller for an infield single.

Virginia used timely, two-out hitting to score three times in the fourth inning. With two outs and Nick Howard (Jr., Olney, Md.) on second base, Irving lined a single to right with Howard sliding in safely at home just before the tag. Towns then doubled off the wall in left-center to bring Irving around to score. La Prise dropped a single into left field to easily plate Towns and give UVa a 4-0 edge. 

The Cavaliers added a run with two outs in the seventh inning when Mike Papi (Jr., Tunkhannock, Pa.) scored on a wild pitch.

Boston College staged a huge scoring threat in the eighth inning, loading the bases with none out against Austin Young (Sr., Mechanicsville, Va.). Whit Mayberry (R-Sr., Alexandria, Va.) entered the game and promptly struck out Blake Butera and Chris Shaw before John Hennessy popped out to second base.

UVa added three runs in the eighth inning to push the lead to 8-0. Towns lined a double off the left-field wall to score Irving. One out later Daniel Pinero (Fr., Toronto, Ontario) ripped a two-run single back up the middle, scoring Towns and La Prise.

BC broke up the shutout with two outs in the ninth inning as Gabriel Hernandez walked on a 3-2 pitch with the bases loaded against Brett Lisle (R-So., Highlands Ranch, Colo.). Freshman Alec Bettinger (Woodbridge, Va.) came on to end the threat by striking out Butera.

Because of a threat for inclement weather Sunday, Virginia and Boston College conclude the series at 1 p.m. Saturday with a doubleheader.