Kirby throws Friday night no-no, No. 1 Cavaliers win two against Pitt
Nathan Kirby has a powerful showing Friday night in the Virginia baseball team’s 4-0 series-opening win against ACC-newcomer Pittsburgh. The sophomore southpaw slung a no-hitter while dispatching 18 Panther batters via strikeout, the highlight of a three-game road set. The No. 1 Cavaliers (27-5, 12-3 ACC) earned two more wins to retain a one-game lead over hard-charging Miami (21-12, 11-4 ACC) in the Coastal Division.
Kirby (6-1, 1.03 ERA) pitched the fifth Virginia no-hitter in the past 50 years while finishing one strikeout short of matching the single-game ACC record — a mark originally established by the Cavaliers’ Harry Thomas in 1974. Kirby struck out 10 consecutive batters between the second and fifth innings and ended the game by recording 13 straight outs.
Pittsburgh (16-15, 8-7 ACC) had just two base runners all evening — one by walk and one by error — as Kirby became the first Cavalier hurler to hold the opposition hitless since right-hander Will Roberts tossed a 10-strikeout perfect game against George Washington March 29, 2011.
Redshirt junior right-hander Joseph Harvey was similarly stingy in Pittsburgh’s 2-1 Saturday victory, which halted Virginia’s winning streak at nine games. The Cavaliers mustered just two singles, two walks and an unearned run in Harvey’s seven innings of work. The game never ceased to be a pitcher’s duel — it was knotted at 1-1 heading into ninth — but ended in the Panther’s favor when junior third baseman Jordan Frabasilio lofted a walk-off sacrifice fly to center field with one out.
Sunday, Virginia turned to sophomore left-hander Brandon Waddell, who dominated Pittsburgh for eight innings — the longest outing of his career. Waddell faced just one batter more than the minimum while yielding two hits and no walks in the 3-0 victory.
Virginia travels to Harrisonburg, Va. Tuesday for a 6 p.m. midweek game against James Madison. The Cavaliers previously defeated the Dukes, 13-2, March 11 in Charlottesville.