'Hoos Take it Easy After 15-Inning Marathon

They got off the bus at Creighton University's baseball field wearing T-shirts and shorts. The team's regular players spent most of the practice as spectators.

For the Virginia baseball team, Wednesday afternoon was a nice change of pace after playing the longest game in TD Ameritrade Park history the night before.

"Relaxed. Still kind of tired after a 15-inning game," junior outfielder Brandon Downes said Wednesday, when asked how the Wahoos were feeling before practice.

"We were all pretty tired after dinner last night, and we got breakfast at 11. So that was nice," Downes said. "But we're going to take it nice and easy today. We've got a nice breeze, so it'll be nice."

The Cavaliers improved to 2-0 at the College World Series with Tuesday's 3-2 win over TCU in 15 innings. With that victory, UVa won't play again until Friday night, when the Wahoos will face the winner of Thursday's elimination game between the Horned Frogs and Ole Miss.

"It's important that at this juncture in the season that our guys get their rest. That we can get them off their legs," said UVa coach Brian O'Connor. "We're going to have a brief practice today, practice a little harder tomorrow. But this is the luxury you have when you're 2-0. You get a couple of days to regroup, and get yourself ready to go for Friday."

The "Walk-Off Wahoos" have won both of their games in Omaha in their final at-bat. On Sunday night against Ole Miss, it was Mike Papi's double to the warning track that beat the Rebels 2-1. On Tuesday, Daniel Pinero beat the Horned Frogs with a sacrifice fly.

"They're stressful, but they're fun," junior second baseman Branden Cogswell said of the Cavaliers' first two games. "I was just telling the guys, I'm losing years off my life. But it's worth it. We're having a blast out there."

"To be honest, I get more nervous just watching," said junior closer Nick Howard, who didn't give up a run in a season-high four innings Tuesday night against TCU. "When I'm in there, I'm not really thinking about too much. Just kind of going out there and throwing. But once I came out, it was very nerve-wracking just watching that game."

Junior Thomas Woodruff has scored the winning runs in both games, after coming off the UVa bench as a pinch-runner both times.

"I tell you what. After this win, we would all go out and play another 15 if we could win another game," Woodruff said after Tuesday's win. "There's definitely a little bit of adrenaline going in the locker room right now, but we'll definitely enjoy the days off."

Tuesday's victory also puts the Cavaliers a win away from next week's CWS championship series. The winner of Thursday's elimination game would have to beat the Wahoos on back-to-back days -- something no team has done all year -- to get out of Bracket Two.

"You ask any of the guys, they say they believe it, because we're here and we've done it, and we know that we're tough enough to be here," said Woodruff. "But, I mean, it's incredible to be 2-0 here. It's awesome. Great team wins, all the way through."

"It puts us in a really good position, but we're not done," said junior catcher Nate Irving. "We came here for a specific reason. We came here to walk away with a national championship. So at the same time, this gets us closer to our end goal. We're not finished here, and we know that."

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