The top-ranked Virginia baseball team responded from a season-opening loss with a 12-0 win over VMI on Saturday at the Hughes Bros. Challenge in Wilmington, N.C.
Sophomore pitcher Nathan Kirby allowed four hits and a walk in six innings of work, finishing with a career-high seven strikeouts. Freshman Alec Bettinger allowed a hit in 1 2/3 innings in his UVa debut, while Kevin Doherty pitched the final 1 1/3 innings to finish off the shutout.
The 'Hoos tallied a dozen hits on the afternoon, with five players recording two hits apiece. Brandon Downes finished with 2 hits and three RBI, while Mike Papi scored three runs and reached base four times.
The Cavaliers opened a 2-0 lead in the second inning, then doubled their lead in the third. Papi led off with a single and moved up a pair of bases on an errant pickoff throw. Two outs later, Fisher scored Papi on a line drive, and Nick Howard then tripled to score Fisher.
The Cavaliers added a run in the fourth inning, and opened up a 10-0 run in the fifth. Robbie Coman, Papi and Joe McCarthy all drove in runs, followed by a two-run single from Downes.
UVa returns to the diamond on Sunday to take on UNC Wilmington at 2 p.m.
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