Virginia struck for eight runs in the third inning and got eight hits and eight RBIs from its top three batters in the lineup to record a 13-2 triumph over James Madison in a non-conference baseball game on Tuesday afternoon at Davenport Field.
UVA, ranked third by Baseball America and in the top five in all five national polls, improved to 12-3. Playing a ranked opponent for the fourth time in four days, JMU fell to 7-9 overall.
Junior center fielder Kevin Husum (Panama City, Fla./Bay) drove in both JMU runs with a single and a groundout. He also pitched a scoreless inning of relief. Junior left fielder Chad Carroll (Oakton, Va./Oakton) doubled and scored both JMU runs.
First baseman Mike Papi smacked a pair of home runs for the Cavaliers with a solo shot in the first and a two-run shot to propel the eight spot in the third. Leadoff second baseman Branden Cogswell was 3-for-4 with a walk, two runs and three RBIs. Number two hitter Daniel Pinero was also 3-for-4 with two RBIs. Catcher Nate Irving and third baseman Kenny Towns added to Virginia’s 16-hit attack with two-hit games.
Connor Jones earned the win for UVA in his first collegiate start with one run allowed on three hits in four innings. Redshirt sophomore left-hander Aaron Hoover (Centreville, Va./Westfield) took the loss for Madison with six runs allowed, five earned, on five hits in 2 2/3 innings.
Virginia put its first run on the board in the bottom of the first with two outs as Papi smacked an 0-2 pitch into the bleachers in right field.
In the second, Carroll led off with a double to left center. He was bunted to third and scored on an RBI groundout by Husum to knot it at 1-1.
The Cavaliers put a runner on with a leadoff walk in the third. Then Papi unloaded on a no-doubt, two-run shot to right field to make it 3-1. UVA kept the inning going with a walk and a single to be followed by an RBI single to center by Irving. Following a pitching change, Towns singled to left center to make it 5-1. An error by redshirt sophomore Kyle Weston (Penn Laird, Va./Spotswood) extended the inning to load the bases, and Cogswell followed with a single down the left-field line to plate two more to make it 7-1. Pinero added another two-run single to make it 9-1.
JMU put runners on the corners in the fifth. Husum came through with a two-out single to center to plate a run and make it 9-2.
After a pair of scoreless innings for Virginia, the Cavaliers jumped back on the scoreboard in the sixth with a two-run triple to the corner in right by left fielder Robert Bennie. Cogswell then singled through the right side to make it 12-2. An error in the seventh allowed the Cavaliers to add a 13th run.
JMU will be at Eagle Field at Veterans Memorial Park this weekend for a three-game home set with Cornell. Saturday’s doubleheader begins at noon. Sunday’s finale begins at 1 p.m. and features free admission for all fans.