June 1, 2009
IRVINE, CA - Andrew Carraway and Kevin Arico combined on a four-hitter to lead Virginia to a 4-1 win against No. 1 UC Irvine and the championship of the Irvine Regional on Sunday at Anteater Ballpark.
The Cavaliers (46-12-1) advanced to their first-ever NCAA Super Regional after finishing 3-0 in the Irvine Regional. UCI, hosting its first regional, concluded its season at 45-15.
Franco Valdes, the Most Outstanding Player of the Irvine Regional, provided the game-winning hit in the sixth inning as his one-out triple scored Danny Hultzen, who led off the frame with a single. That hit put UVA up 2-1.
The Cavaliers added back-to-back RBI triples from Jarrett Parker and Tyler Cannon in the ninth to pad the lead to 4-1.
The extra runs were not needed on this night as Carraway pitched a gem in his seven-inning stint. The senior right-hander yielded all four Anteater hits while walking one and striking out three. His only blemish occurred in the fourth when UCI junior Jeff Cusick singled home Casey Stevenson with two outs to tie the game 1-1.
Carraway improved to 7-1 on the year.
Carraway allowed only two hits over the next three innings and was lifted at the start of the eighth for sophomore closer Kevin Arico. Arico struck out two in his two hitless innings of work to pick up his 11th save.
UCI attempted to provide some dramatics in the ninth but the UVA defense, which did not commit an error in the regional, came up big again. Parker robbed Shaeffer of a leadoff hit with a diving catch in center field for the first out. Cannon then ranged far to his left to steal a hit from Cusick for the second out. Arico fanned Francis Larson to end the game.
UVA's pitching performance overshadowed an equally impressive effort by UC Irvine pitchers Noel Avison and Kyle Necke. In only his third start of the season, Avison hurled a career-high 4.1 innings and surrendered six hits and one run. Necke yielded two hits and two runs in 4.0 innings of relief, striking out three.
Necke took the loss and fell to 1-4 on the season.
UC IRVINE REGIONAL ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
C - Franco Valdes, Virginia
1B - Brandon Meredith, San Diego State
2B - Casey Stevenson, UC Irvine
3B - Steven Proscia, Virginia
SS - Ben Orloff, UC Irvine
OF - Jarrett Parker, Virginia
OF - Eric Deragisch, UC Irvine
OF - Jordan Fox, UC Irvine
DH - Phil Gosselin, Virginia
P - Stephen Strasburg, San Diego State
P - Danny Bibona, UC Irvine
P - Danny Hultzen, Virginia
MOST OUTSTANDING PLAYER
Franco Valdes, Virginia