May 26, 2012
GREENSBORO, N.C. (seminoles.com) – Fourth-seeded Virginia (38-17-1) handed top-seeded Florida State (43-15) its first shutout of the season as the Cavaliers blanked the Seminoles 7-0 Saturday afternoon in the final game for both teams at the 2012 ACC Tournament inside NewBridge Bank Park in Greensboro, N.C.
The Seminoles concluded the ACC Tournament 0-3 in pool `A’ play marking the first time in school history Florida State did not record a win in the tournament.
The shutout was the first for Florida State since NC State blanked the Seminoles by the identical score in the opening round game of the 2011 ACC Tournament in Durham, a span of 66 consecutive games of scoring a run.
“It’s a humbling game,” said head coach Mike Martin. “That was just an old fashion butt whipping. Virginia played extremely well. This is baseball at its best (ACC Tournament). We got beat; no excuses what so ever on our side.”
Florida State and Virginia battled in a true pitcher’s duel through the first six innings before the Cavaliers broke the game open with a six-run seventh inning.
The only run through the first six innings came on a sac-fly by Virginia’s Colin Harrington in the bottom of the fourth.
FSU starter Mike Compton (10-2) suffered just his second loss of the season as the freshman right hander pitched well allowing just one run on six hits in 5.0 innings of work. Compton left the game after facing one batter in the sixth and finished with two walks and a pair of strikeouts.
Virginia starter Artie Lewicki (4-2) was virtually unhittable as the sophomore right hander scattered just three hits in 7.0 scoreless innings of work. He held the Seminoles to just three singles and faced no more than four batters in each of his seven innings.
“It was a beautifully pitched ball game by Lewicki,” added Martin. “I thought Mike Compton pitched very well. It was just one of those ball games that Virginia deserved to win.
“I knew Lewicki was capable of pitching well; however, I didn’t expect him to dominate us like he did.”
Devon Travis collected two of FSU’s five hits on the afternoon as the junior second baseman went 2-for-3 with a double and a single. He reached base a third time when he was hit on the foot in the sixth. Jayce Boyd, Stephen McGee and John Nogowski each had a hit in the loss.
The best scoring chance for the Seminoles on Saturday came in the eighth off Cavalier relief Kyle Crockett. Nogowski led off the inning with a single to left center and advanced to third on a two-out double down the line in right by Travis. But Crockett got James Ramsey to hit a sharp one-hopper to Keith Werman at second, who threw on to first for the final out of the inning.
Justin Thompson preserved the shutout pitching a perfect ninth as he faced three Seminole hitters and struck out two.
“It’s definitely frustrating,” said Travis. “We really haven’t hit much of a speed bump this year, we have been rolling and it hurts. But we have a group of guys that have been through this before. Two years ago, we got swept at Clemson and we ended up going to Omaha that year. That actually was the turning point in the season; we needed something like that to get us going. Not to say that it is good that we lost three games in the ACC Tournament but I think we have what it takes to turn things around.”
Virginia put runners at the corners with just one out in the bottom of the second, but Compton left them stranded to keep the game scoreless. Derek Fisher led off the inning with a walk and moved to second on a one-out bunt single by Harrington. After an errant throw by McGee on a failed pickoff attempt at first moved Fisher to third, Compton got Brandon Downes swinging on strikes and Nate Irving to fly out to right to retire the side.
The Seminoles recorded two base runners through the first three innings as Boyd registered Florida State’s first hit of the game on a single to left center. He was retired a batter later when Lewicki got McGee to ground into a double play. Nogowski drew a one-out walk in the third but was left stranded as Lewicki got a fly out and a groundout for the final two outs in the inning.
Travis led off the fourth with a single to right center but the Cavaliers turned their second double play of the game on a Boyd groundball to keep the game scoreless.
Virginia broke through with its first run in the bottom of the fourth with consecutive singles off Compton. Fisher laced a single through the right side, while Jared King followed putting one in the exact location on a well-executed hit-and-run as Fisher scampered to third. With runners at the corners, Harrington sent a sac-fly to center to plate Fisher for the first run of the game and 1-0 UVa lead.
For the third time in the first five innings, the Seminoles put the leadoff batter aboard as McGee singled up the middle. But Lewicki kept Florida State off the scoreboard thanks in large part to a great defensive play by Harrington in right. With one out, Josh Delph hit a long fly ball out to right, but Harrington made a nice leaping catch, crashing into the wall and hanging on for the second out of the inning.
Virginia looked to add to its lead in the fifth after Chris Taylor and Branden Cogswell registered back-to-back infield singles, but Compton got out of the jam getting Stephen Bruno to ground into an inning ending double play.
The Cavaliers put the game out of reach in the seventh plating six runs to extend their lead to 7-0. Virginia sent 11 batters to the plate in the seventh as the Seminoles went through four pitchers. Bruno began the scoring spree with an RBI single. Fisher registered a two-run single, while Harrington hit an RBI single to right and Brandon Downes finished the scoring with a two-run single to left.
Virginia out hit Florida State 12-5 on Saturday as all 12 Cavalier hits went for singles.
Florida State will return home to learn their fate for the upcoming NCAA Baseball Tournament. The 64-team field will be announced on Monday, May 28 in a one-hour selection show broadcast live on ESPNU beginning at 12 noon. The NCAA will announce the 16 Regional sites on Sunday, May 27 at approximately 3:30 p.m.