Florida State (4-4, 2-3 ACC) beat 16th-ranked Virginia 9-4 for their second straight win in game two of a their three-game series against the Cavaliers.
Starting pitcher Bryce Hubbart (2-1) was dominant in six shutout innings. Hubbart allowed just one hit and three total baserunners while facing 21 batters. He struck out six UVA batters and forced eight ground outs while throwing 81 pitches. Hubbart’s ERA improved to ERA for the season after entering the day with a 3.18 ERA.
“First of all you are only as good as your next day’s pitching,” said FSU coach Mike Martin Jr. “Bryce Hubbart was outstanding.”
“I felt like I did a pretty good job,” Hubbart said of his performance in earning the win over the Cavaliers.
Offensively, FSU took advantage of UVA pitchers inability to find the strike zone coupled with some timely hitting to give Hubbart and the rest of the Seminoles’ pitchers all the run support they would need on a cloudy and cool Saturday afternoon in Dick Howser Stadium. UVA walked nine FSU hitters, four of which would eventually cross the plate. FSU finished the game with eight hits against 11 strikeouts after seeing 18 batters strikeout against the Cavaliers in the series opener on Friday night.
“We put together some good at-bats,” said Martin Jr. of the Seminoles’ offensive performance.
The Seminoles broke a scoreless tie in the bottom of the third when it found itself with the bases loaded with one out. Catcher Matheu Nelson earned a walk to bring 3B Logan Lacey, who had walked to start the inning, across the plate to give FSU a 1-0 lead. RF Robby Martin then plated 2B Vance Smith, who had also reached base on a walk, on a sacrifice fly to left field to take a 2-0 lead into the fourth inning.
In the bottom of the fourth CF Reese Albert started the inning with a walk and then advanced to second on a single by DH Garrett Mathes. Jackson Greene who came into pinch hit for Logan Lacey then walked to load the bases with no outs. SS Nander De Sedas then singled in two runs to give FSU a 4-0 lead. Smith then doubled to deep left field to drive across FSU’s third run of the inning. Tyler Martin then drove in another run on a fielder’s choice to make it 6-0. That was quickly followed by an RBI single to right field by Nelson which plated Smith to give FSU a 7-0 lead.
FSU added runs in the fifth and sixth inning to extend its lead to 9-0.
Jack Anderson took the mound in the seventh for FSU and faced three UVA batters before leaving the game with one out and runners on the corners. He was replaced by Chase Haney, who gave up an unearned run after a fielding error by Reese Albert. That was followed by a bases-loaded double that cut FSU’s lead to 9-4. Haney was then replaced by Jonah Scolaro, who retired the only batter he faced in the seventh to end UVA’s half of the inning with a runner on second.
Scolaro allowed two singles in the eighth but was able to get out of the inning without giving up any runs. Davis Hare pitched the ninth, securing the win for FSU by retiring three of the four batters he faced (including two by strikeouts).
FSU pitchers combined to give up just five hits in the game while striking out eight UVA batters and giving up just four walks.
Albert led FSU with two hits while Nelson, Greene and De Sedas all drove in two runs a piece.
The Virginia-FSU box score can be viewed here.
FSU will play UVA again on Sunday at 1 p.m. with a chance for the Seminoles to sweep their first series of the season. The game will stream live on ACC Network Extra.