Brian O'Connor's team faces a must-win game Tuesday night
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) -
Virginia's offense had one of its best games of the season Monday night, and if it weren't for a disastrous third inning, which saw the 'Hoos give up nine runs, Virginia would have won.
The Cavaliers are still a confident bunch heading into Tuesday night's must-win game two.
Virginia has lost back-to-back games only once this season.
Brian O'Connor says, "This team has responded after a loss all season, and I think it is really what has defined this ball club. We haven't had losing streaks. We've found a way to come back. I think that will start again tomorrow, and we'll find a way to respond positively."
"We gave them that win," said outfielder Mike Papi. "I'm an honest man, I definitely don't think they deserved that game, and we handed it to them,"
Nathan Kirby struggled on the mound and the 'Hoos made a costly error in the field, and this team which prides itself on pitching and defense failed Monday.
"It happens," says infielder Branden Cogswell. "It hasn't happened all year. It stinks that it happened tonight on the big stage, but it's not something that we can't come back from."
Virginia showed a lot of heart fighting back last night scoring seven of its eight runs with two outs.
The 'Hoos belted 15 hits, giving the team some momentum heading into Tuesday night's game.
Outfielder Derek Fisher says, "We got a lot of guys on this team that aren't going to give up. We showed that today, obviously, but when you look at it in the grand scheme of things, and you're playing a team like Vanderbilt, you're going to have to play hard every single day. That's why the national championship is a best of three games, rather than one.
Cogswell says, "I think a lot of teams are going to carry this into tomorrow, after reflecting on tonight, and we'll play some good baseball."
UVa sophomore southpaw Brandon Waddell will be Virginia's starting pitcher Tuesday night.
O'Connor says, "We were in this position two weeks ago against Maryland, and he came out and threw a terrific ball game. He's going to attack them, he's going to throw strikes, and they're going to have to beat him. They're a very talented club too. We're both here playing for it all."
Waddell has an era of 2.57.
He only gave up one earned run in seven innings earlier in the CWS against TCU.
Vanderbilt is expected to start pitcher Tyler Beede.
Beede was a 1st round draft pick of the San Francisco Giants earlier this month, but he's struggled in his last 2 starts.
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Marty Hudtloff is the Sports Director at WVIR-TV. He joined the NBC29 sports team in October of 2003. He has a degree in broadcast journalism from Bradley University. You can reach out to Marty via Email or Twitter.