Tom Murphy is a reporter for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. A graduate of Louisiana Tech University, he is a member of the Football Writers Association of America, and voter for the Heisman Trophy and AP Top 25 football poll.
Virginia rolls past Bucknell in opener
Virginia outfielder Derek Fisher (23) holds onto a fly ball during an NCAA College regional tournament baseball game against Bucknell in Charlottesville, Va., Friday, May 30, 2014. The play was ruled an out. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- No. 4 Virginia scored seven runs in the sixth inning, took advantage of a handful of errors and misplays by Bucknell and routed the Bison 10-1 Friday in the opening game of the NCAA Charlottesville Regional at Davenport Field.
Mike Papi and John La Prise had three hits each to lead the national No. 3 seed Cavaliers, who scored single runs in the first three innings against Bryson Hough (8-4).
Virginia (45-13) advanced to today's 7 p.m. winner's bracket game. The Bison (30-20-1), making their sixth NCAA regional appearance, will play in the 2 p.m. elimination game.
Artie Lewicki (6-1) allowed 3 hits and 3 walks, struck out 5 and overcame a shaky first inning to pick up the victory in a seven-inning stint.
Virginia's Branden Cogswell bunted and reached on Hough's fielding error to open the first inning, setting the tone for the game. The Bison committed four errors, and Virginia laid down four sacrifice bunts.
With runners at first and third in the sixth inning, Virginia catcher Nate Irving bunted for the third time. Bucknell third baseman Sam Clark fielded the bunt and threw wildly to third base, allowing two runs to score and setting off the six-run inning.
"I think we gave up about eight or nine unearned runs, and you can't give a team like Virginia extra outs," said Bucknell Coach Scott Heather, who pitched at Arkansas in 1997-98. "Especially when maybe they're scuffling at the plate a little bit early."
Bucknell avoided a shutout by scoring in the eighth off reliever Connor Jones. Leadoff batter Brett Smith walked, moved up on Anthony Gingerelli's single and eventually scored on a wild pitch.
-- Tom Murphy
Sports on 05/31/2014