Coverage of Virginia in the winners bracket begins at 7:30 Friday
The Virginia baseball team (51-14) outlasted TCU (48-17) to earn a 3-2 victory in a marathon 15-inning game on Tuesday (June 17) at the 2014 Men’s College World Series at TD Ameritrade Park Omaha.
Junior catcher Nate Irving (Yonkers, N.Y.) smashed a ground-rule double to lead off the bottom of the 15th inning. Junior pinch runner Thomas Woodruff (Clifton, Va.) scored the winning run for the second-straight game, scoring from third base on a one-out sacrifice fly from freshman shortstop Daniel Pinero (Toronto, Ontario).
“Wow, that was a heck of a baseball game,” Virginia head coach Brian O’Connor said. “Both teams really fought and battled. I am just really proud of our guys. [Brandon] Waddell gives up the two runs in the second inning and then continued to fight and gave us seven strong innings. Everyone we brought out of the pen did a nice job. I know the two teams still in our bracket are not going away, but I am just really proud of our club. They’ve grinded all year and today was another great example of that.”
Virginia will next play on Friday (June 20) at 8 p.m. ET, facing the winner of Thursday night’s elimination game between TCU and Ole Miss.
The 15-inning contest tied the College World Series record for the longest game by innings played, a feat that had most recently been accomplished by Southern California and Florida State in 1970. It was the longest-ever game (by innings) to be played at TD Ameritrade Park, eclipsing the previous record of 13 innings in UVa’s 3-2 loss to South Carolina in 2011. It also marked the fourth-longest game by time in CWS history (4:51).
Senior Artie Lewicki (Wyckoff, N.J) picked up his second win of the College World Series and improved to 8-1 on the season after working two scoreless innings while striking out a pair of batters. Sophomore Brandon Waddell (Houston, Texas) started the game for the Cavaliers, but did not factor into the decision. Waddell worked seven innings, allowing two runs, one earned, giving up six hits and striking out five without walking a batter. Junior Nick Howard (Olney, Md.), in his longest outing of the season, pitched four scoreless innings of relief, allowing one hit, walking one and striking out six.
Junior second baseman Branden Cogswell (Ballston Lake, N.Y.) finished the game 3-of-5 with a walk and two runs scored. Irving was the only other Cavalier with a multi-hit game, going 2-of-6.
Cogswell doubled to right field to lead off the bottom of the first for the Cavaliers. Cogswell scored after tagging up on a fly out to right, forcing a throw to third that went past the third baseman, allowing Cogswell to come home.
In the top of the second, the Horned Frogs plated the tying run on three hits in the frame. The Cavaliers had a chance to get out of the inning allowing only the one run when Pinero bobbled a grounder to short, allowing a second run to come in and putting UVa behind 2-1.
Cogswell doubled to left-center lead off the bottom of the fifth, and the Cavaliers tied the game 2-2 on a groundout to the right side by junior first baseman Mike Papi (Tunkhannock, Pa.).
The pitchers dueled from that point on. Both teams had four hits over the final 10 innings. UVa was hitless in extra innings prior to the Irving double.