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Baseball beats Liberty 6-3

Cavaliers avenge March road loss to Flames

Sophomore left-hander Andrew Abbott started on the mound for Virginia Tuesday and surrendered only one hit in four innings of work.
Sophomore left-hander Andrew Abbott started on the mound for Virginia Tuesday and surrendered only one hit in four innings of work.

The Virginia baseball team (24-18, 9-12 ACC) beat Liberty (29-11, 9-3 Atlantic Sun) 6-3 at home Tuesday evening. The Cavaliers had previously lost to the Flames 14-5 on the road March 13.

Sophomore left-hander Andrew Abbott started on the mound for Virginia. He opened the game with two 1-2-3 innings before surrendering a solo homer to Liberty junior designated hitter Ben Highfill in the third to put the Flames ahead 1-0.

The home run by Highfill was the only hit Abbott allowed in four innings of work, striking out six Liberty batters in the process. Senior right-hander Chesdin Harrington came in to relieve him and got the win, giving up two runs in three innings.

Virginia tied the score up in the bottom of the fourth. Sophomore designated hitter Brendan Rivoli doubled then scored on an RBI groundout by senior first baseman Nate Eikhoff.

However, in the top of the fifth, Liberty junior catcher Jonathan Embry hit a two-run homer off Harrington, putting the Flames up 3-1.

The Cavaliers struck back in the bottom of the fifth and made it 3-3 when freshman second baseman Nic Kent hit a two-run homer of his own to left. The home run was Kent’s third of the season and gave him a team-high 35 RBI’s.

Rivoli then hit an RBI double to right, scoring freshman third baseman Zack Gelof and putting Virginia ahead. Rivoli would score on a Liberty error after senior center fielder Cameron Simmons hit an infield single. Eikhoff hit an RBI double to left-center to score Simmons and finish the Cavaliers’ scoring for the inning.

By the end of the fifth, Virginia had scored five runs and led 6-3, the eventual final score of the game. Sophomore right-hander Kyle Whitten pitched the ninth inning and earned the save.

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