Rogers' Around the Bases

Rogers' takes: Looking back at Tuesday (3/29)

3/30/2011 12:36:50 AM

Winning or losing in the midweek often can determine if a team reaches the NCAA postseason. That won't be the case for Virginia, which will be in the postseason no matter how many midweek losses it has the rest of the season. However, it still was a special Tuesday for the Cavaliers as pitcher Will Roberts tossed a perfect game against George Washington.

Here are some highlights from Tuesday's college baseball action.

-- It was a day to remember for Virginia starting pitcher Will Roberts, who tossed the eighth nine-inning perfect game in NCAA Division I history since 1957 in a 2-0 triumph over George Washington. Roberts struck out 10 batters in the win and became the 19th pitcher to record a perfect game in any game situation, nine innings or not. Auburn's Eric Brandon (vs. Murray State) was the last pitcher to throw a perfect game, and that was in 2002. With the win, the red-hot Cavaliers improved to 25-2 on the season.

-- After dropping a home series to South Carolina last weekend, the last thing Florida wanted to see Tuesday was a motivated Florida State club. The Seminoles lost to the Gators in Gainesville, Fla., the last time the two teams met. But they returned the favor with a 5-2 triumph over the Gators to go up 2-1 in the season series. Robert Benincasa, Scott Sitz, Daniel Bennett and Mike McGee were solid on the mound, while James Ramsey and Stuart Tapley each knocked in two runs, with Tapley's two-run home run in the eighth sealing the victory.

-- After losing the Los Angeles Super Regional to UCLA last summer, Cal State Fullerton wouldn't wait to face the Bruins on Tuesday. The Titans put together a good enough performance in a 5-3 victory over their sudden rivals from Westwood. Fullerton starting pitcher Colin O'Connell allowed three runs in six innings, while Ray Hernandez, whom the Bruins had success against in the super regional, allowed just one hit in three outstanding innings of relief work. Richy Pedroza and Tyler Pill each had two hits in the game, while Carlos Lopez knocked in two runs. The Titans suddenly are playing a solid brand of baseball again. UCLA, meanwhile, continues to struggle at the plate.

-- Clemson dropped a tough road series to N.C. State last weekend and wanted to begin the new week on the right foot against Georgia. The Tigers couldn't have asked for a better performance in an 11-5 win over the Bulldogs. They scored just two runs the first five innings before erupting for nine runs in their last three at bats. Catcher Spencer Kieboom returned to the lineup from his concussion and collected two hits, while Chris Epps hit a home run and Richie Shaffer hit a home run and knocked in four runs. The Tigers now need to get on a run.

-- You really have to like the job the California pitching staff is doing. The Golden Bears got another stellar start from a pitcher, this time Kevin Miller, in a 4-0 triumph over San Francisco. Miller, a senior right-handed pitcher, struck out 15 and allowed just a hit in eight innings to earn his third win. Matt Flemer finished the game with a strikeout in an inning of work. The Bears recorded two shutouts last weekend against a decent Washington State club. You're now seeing why the Golden Bears were highly ranked by us to begin the season.

-- Western Kentucky headed to Louisville for a huge midweek contest. The Hilltoppers were red-hot entering the contest, but went home with a 3-1 setback. WKU starting pitcher Phil Wetherell allowed just a run in four innings and reliever Brian Doering threw two shutout innings. However, the Cardinals scored two runs the final two frames off Taylor Haydel. For Louisville, starting pitcher Jeff Thompson struck out seven and allowed just a run and a hit in 5 1/3 innings. The UL bullpen also did a fabulous job.

-- In Game 1 of a highly anticipated two-game midweek series between Stetson and Central Florida, the Knights hoped to take care of business at home. They did just that in an 8-2 triumph over the red-hot Hatters. UCF starting pitcher Chase Bradford struck out and allowed just two runs on seven hits in six innings, while relievers Nick Cicio and Ronnie Richardson were solid. Stetson starting pitcher Will Dorsey didn't have a good start, allowing six runs on 12 hits in just three innings. UCF was led at the plate by outfielder Erik Hempe, who went 3-for-3 with two RBIs. The two teams head back to DeLand, Fla., for Game 2 on Wednesday.

-- Troy was right on the cusp of our rankings this week, and hoped to start another week on a positive note at Auburn. That didn't happen as the Tigers bounced back from a tough series at Mississippi State with a 6-1 triumph over the Trojans. Auburn starting pitcher Jon Luke Jacobs struck out three in three hitless innings, while relievers Will Irvin, Bradley Hendrix, Ethan Wallen and Zach Blatt also threw well. This was a huge win for an Auburn club that previously was scuffling.

  • Charlotte boosted its resume with a 4-3 win over North Carolina
  • Mercer ended Georgia Tech's lengthy winning streak with a 4-2 triumph
  • UAB used strong pitching to cool down red-hot Alabama 5-1
  • UTSA used strong pitching to surprise Baylor 4-2
  • Long Island used solid pitching to surprise St. John's 5-3
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