June 2, 2013
BLACKSBURG, Va. – The University of Connecticut baseball team’s run through the postseason came to an end Sunday evening as the team dropped a 3-1 decision to No. 1 seed and No. 16 nationally-ranked Virginia Tech during the 2013 NCAA Regional in Blacksburg. With the loss, UConn ends its season with a 35-28 record after winning the BIG EAST Tournament and advancing to at least the NCAA Regional for the third time in the last four years.
Virginia Tech held a 3-1 edge in the ninth and the Huskies (playing as the home team in Blacksburg) made it interesting with their last licks. Freshman shortstop Vinny Siena singled to the pitcher with one out and freshman first baseman Bobby Melley followed that with a single though the right side. Melley ended his NCAA Tournament debut by batting .500 (7-for-14) during the Regional and was named to the All-Regional Team.
The Husky threat came to an end though when freshman catcher Max McDowell grounded out sharply into a 6-4-3 double play.
Melley and McDowell each had 2-for-4 afternoons for the Huskies while senior DH Stanley Paul went 1-for-3.
UConn cut the 2-0 Hokie lead in half in the bottom of the fifth. Melley notched a leadoff hit, his sixth in the Regional, and Max McDowell followed that with an infield single. Jon Testani laid down a good sac bunt and reached on a muffed catch by the second baseman, Alex Perez, who was covering first base. Melley was able to score on the play but McDowell was thrown out at the plate after Perez made a good through from foul territory.
The Huskies would load the bases up following singles from Eric Yavorone and Stanley Paul but Markey was able to get Verdi to ground into a double-play to end the threat.
Junior starter Anthony Marzi was solid for UConn, going 5.1 innings and giving up one earned run on five hits while striking out five and walking two. Senior Will Jolin and sophomore David Mahoney combined for an inning of scoreless relief while senior Dan Feehan gave up one run and struck out two in 2.2 innings of work.
The Hokies took a 1-0 lead with an unearned run in the top of the second. Marzi started the inning off by getting Mark Zagunis to ground out to third but he walked Tyler Horan and Horan stole second on the next pitch. He then advanced to third on a fielding error by Tom Verdi and scored on an RBI groundout to short. Marzi then got Ryan Burns to line out to center, on the first pitch, to limit the damage.
Va. Tech added another run with back-to-back one-out doubles by Horan and Andrew Rash in the top of the fourth. The Hokies were threatening to score more and had runners on first and third with two outs but Marzi was able to bear down and get Kyle Wernicki to fly out to left to end the frame.
#1 Virginia Tech vs. #4 Connecticut
- This year’s senior class is the first since 1961 to see action in three separate NCAA Tournaments (Regional in 2010 and 2013 and Super Regional in 2011)
- With his 27th theft of the season, and 100th of his career, Billy Ferriter becomes the first Connecticut player in school history to record triple digit thefts.
- Virginia Tech has now won eight of the last nine games against the Huskies. UConn has not had a two-game win streak against VT since it won three straight between 1977-2001.
- Tom Verdi’s error was his 15th of the season. Verdi ends the year with the most errors on the 2013 squad.
- With his 5.1 inning outing tonight, Anthony Marzi has allowed just one earned run in 7.1 innings of NCAA Tournament action.
- The Huskies fall to 30-37 all-time in the NCAA Tournament.
- Connecticut ends its season 18-21 against RHP, while holding a 17-7 mark against lefties.
- LJ Mazzilli was kept hitless for the second straight game. It marks the first time in 13 NCAA Tournament games that he has failed to record a hit in consecutive games.
- Connecticut ends the season with 46 double-plays turned. UConn hit into 60 twin-killings throughout the year.