Offense Erupts as Cavaliers Pound Princeton

The No. 3 Virginia baseball team clubbed 15 hits in the Cavaliers’ 14-4 win over Princeton at Davenport Field on Thursday afternoon. The Cavaliers imrpoved to 17-3 overall and ran their win streak to seven games.

Robbie Coman and Nick Howard each drove in four runs in a game that was an addition to UVa’s schedule after Tuesday’s contest with Rutgers was canceled due to inclement weather.

Princeton jumped out to an early 1-0 lead but starting UVa pitcher Alec Bettinger, making his first career start, worked out of the jam to escape any more damage.

Virginia answered back with two runs in the bottom of the first, taking a 2-1 lead. Branden Cogswell led the frame off with a single up the middle and advanced to second on a pass ball. Mike Papi followed with an RBI single, plating Cogswell to tie the game at 1-1. Howard then doubled to right field, scoring Papi.

The Cavaliers broke open the game in the bottom of the second with four hits and six runs to take an 8-1 lead. Papi and Howard hit back-to-back two-run doubles to pace the UVa hit attack in the frame. The Cavaliers put another run on the scoreboard in the fourth inning to advance the advantage to 9-1.

UVa scored five runs on five hits in the fifth to take a 14-2 lead. The big blow in the frame was a bases loaded double by Coman that cleared the bases, scoring McCarthy, Matt Thaiss and Papi. Princeton pushed two runs across in the top of the seventh to finish the game’s scoring.

Bettinger picked up his first career win in his first start, doing 4.0 innings of work, yielding two runs on five hits, while striking out four Tigers. Four Cavalier relievers pitched the game’s final 5.0 innings, allowing two runs on seven hits, while striking out four more Princeton hitters.

Coman and Howard led the way with three hits and four RBI apiece. Papi added two hits and three RBI, while Cogswell stole three bases and scored four runs to help pace the UVa offensive attack. Keller led Princeton with three hits and scored two runs in four at bats.

UVa travels to Miami this weekend for a key three-game ACC series.

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