No. 8 UVA Baseball wins series opener against Florida State 3-2 on Chris Baker’s walk-off RBI hit
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - The UVa baseball team got a walk-off RBI hit from walk-on grad student Chris Baker to earn a 3-2 win over Florida State in ten innings in game one of the 3-game series Friday night at Disharoon Park.
“It’s unbelievable, it’s something you dream about as a kid,” says Baker. “Coming in at that spot in the tenth, 2-2 game, It’s everything you dream of and more. I’m just thankful for coach O’Connor and the rest of the staff for giving me the chance to be here”.
“I’m so happy for Chris Baker. He’s a grad student that came here for school on his own, we didn’t even know about him. He walked on to the team. To have that moment. That’s what you dream about.”
Virginia remains undefeated at home this season at 14-0 and plays game two of the series with Florida State Saturday at 1pm.
HOW IT HAPPENED
• Starting pitcher Nick Parker left the game in the top of the first inning when a line drive hit him in the head. He walked off the field under his own power.
• Thrown into action, sophomore Chase Hungate took over and escaped a bases loaded jam in the first inning unscathed. He went on to pitch five scoreless innings and matched his career-high with five strikeouts. The outing was only his fifth of the season and he came into the game with just 4.1 innings pitched on the year.
• Florida State did get a run across in that top half of the first inning on an RBI ground out by Ben Barrett, a run that was charged to Parker.
• The Cavaliers tied the game up in the sixth with an RBI single from Jake Gelof. He plated Ethan Anderson who led the frame off with a double to the gap in right. The RBI was Gelof’s 32nd of the season.
• Both teams had bases loaded opportunities in the eighth inning. Cavalier reliever Evan Blanco struck out the final batter of the eighth to escape the jam. In the bottom half, Casey Saucke grounded into an inning-ending double play with the bases loaded.
• Florida State took advantage of a UVA fielding miscue in the top of the ninth that allowed Nander De Sedas to score on a ground ball to third base.
• Jay Woolfolk earned the win, pitching the final 1.2 innings in which he struck out three batters. The win was his second of the season.
• The extra inning contest was the first of the season for Virginia. It also marked the first time UVA batted in the bottom of the ninth at home this season.
• The walk-off victory for Virginia was the first since Devin Ortiz hit a walk-off, 10th inning grand slam to clinch the series against North Carolina last season.
• It marked ninth time UVA and FSU have played an extra inning contest. UVA won its first extra-inning game against FSU since 2011 when it won back-to-back extra inning thrillers. All three games of the series in 2011 required extra innings.
• Five different Cavaliers – O’Ferrall, Ethan O’Donnell, Kyle Teel, Casey Saucke and Henry Godbout each put fourth two-hit efforts. Teel extened his reached base streak to 22 games.
First pitch for game two on Saturday (March 25) is set for 1 p.m. The Cavaliers will have righthander Brian Edgington (4-0) on the mound. Florida State has not announced a starting pitcher.
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