May 31, 2013

Follow along at home...

Big win for the Hoos today.  Army ace Chris Rowley pitched a gem, but the gem turned in by our freshman bulldog battler Brandon Waddell was sparklier.  More sparkly?  Oh, and Kyle Crockett slammed the door shut hard en route to a two-inning, six-out save.  The offense was so-so, plenty of hits, but too many scoring chances pissed away.  Credit to Rowley, but it's nice to survive a senior stud starting pitcher with your true freshman warriorballer on the mound.  And yes, I just invented the term "warriorballer."  It applies to Waddell, so suck it.

Warriorballer.

We move forward to face the winner of Elon / UNC-Wilmington tomorrow evening at 6:00.  By then, Army will have been eliminated or will survive to face the loser of tomorrow evening's game on Sunday.  Either way, tip of the hat to Army -- they are a solid, scrappy ballclub.  Pulling for them to play well in the loser's bracket.

Follow all of the action in the NCAA Baseball Tournament...



Scores catching my eye as of 7:45 PM:

Oklahoma 7, Coastal Carolina 3, Final -- Oklahoma is going to own the Blacksburg regional, I suspect.

UConn 4, Virginia Tech 1, B7 -- The Hokies are better than this, but maybe they aren't quite ready for all of the commotion and distraction that comes with hosting a regional?

Austin Peay 4, Florida 3, Final -- This year's Gator team isn't great, but this is still a fairly big upset.

Towson 7, FAU 2, Final -- If you're pulling for any other team this postseason, it should be Towson.

Liberty 8, Clemson 3, Final -- Not the best Clemson club ever, but this is still a shocker.  Maybe they spent too much time bitching about being placed in the rival Gamecocks' regional two years in a row?

UC Santa Barbara 6, Texas A&M 4, Final -- Another big upset.

Miami 7, Oklahoma State 0 -- Good for Miami.  The Canes took down a good opponent today, and they did it in convincing fashion.

Kansas State 20, Wichita State 11, Final -- Bet this was a fun game to watch.

Illinois 6, Georgia Tech 4, Final -- It's a mixed bag for the ACC on day one.  Lots of struggling against inferior opponents.  Anything can happen when staff aces take the mound.

William & Mary 4, Ole Miss 2 -- Big-time upset for the Tribe.

Troy 5, Alabama 2 -- Bama was a 2-seed I was terrified about seeing in the Charlottesville regional.  We dodged them, and now Florida State's path to the supers got a lot cakier today.

North Carolina 4, Canisius 3, T6 -- UNC might just be the favorite to win it all this year... yet is struggling with Canisius right now.  Interesting.  Just goes to show that anything can happen in the college baseball postseason.

STAY TUNED!

Pre-Regional Quotes

Courtesy of UVa Media Relations
May 30, 2013

Virginia Coach Brian O’Connor
Opening Statement:
“I would first like to say to the three visiting schools and their administrations that are here, on behalf of the University of Virginia, we’d like to welcome everybody here to the Charlottesville Regional. We are excited to be hosting another regional here. We’ve got three great teams here this weekend that have joined us. All four of the schools that are here this weekend have earned the right to play at this time of the year. I believe that the visiting coaches, players and administrators will receive great hospitality here in Charlottesville this week and I know that our fans will treat them with class and represent our University the right way. I just want to welcome everyone here for this regional. We are obviously excited to be in the NCAA Tournament again. It’s been a fun year for us in the ACC, it’s been a year where we’ve had a lot of development and maturity of different players throughout the year. Lots have been made of the youth we have in our ball club. Our team has played this year as consistent as we’ve had a club play here in my time. We are really excited to get started with NCAA baseball.”



Army Coach Joe Sottolano
Opening Statement:
“Once again, it’s good to be back. Seeing that name pop up on the screen, right back at Virginia, was sort of a pleasant surprise. I thought last year’s regional was extremely well run, very professional. From the coaching staff all the way up to the administration and the town, and the city. We are pleased to be here. I’d like to congratulate all the coaches. Of the four teams here I think we are probable the youngest and newest. These coaches are used to being at regionals and NCAA tournaments, obviously we’ve had some success to come here as of late, but it’s great to be here. I’ve heard a lot about these institutions over the years. First time playing for me against Elon and against [UNC] Wilmington, so we are very pleased to be here. Again, a very young team, I’d like to echo what Coach [O’Connor] said a little bit. We are talking about teams only bringing back ten players - we have only two players on the field who started last year for us. It was sort of a David vs. Goliath all year. Not one junior or senior had started before this year, so this is a very young team. It’s been a fun season, a developmental season, to see what happened early and how we developed as of late. We have to be extremely tough and very disciplined in what we are doing to compete against these three schools, and I understand that, we’ve been working hard at that. We are looking forward to the challenges, and again I’d like to thank everyone for having us here, and congratulate these coaches.”

UNC Wilmington Coach Mark Scalf
Opening Statement:
“We are very excited to be back in post-season as well, and I will echo congratulations to all the schools. This year’s club is a little bit different for us than some we’ve had in the past. We’re probably not as athletic as some of the clubs we’ve had. We really have four starters back off of last year’s regional team, as far as position players, so the contributions we’ve received from a number of players that are returning, but have spent very little time for us on the field, and some freshmen, has been fun to watch. We know that for us, to have a chance here, we are going to have to play extremely clean defensively, and we are going to have to pitch like we have all year. I think our pitching staff has been very consistent throughout the course of the year, and has given us a chance. We are a club that has to move runners and we have to count on some big two out RBI’s to have a chance to win some ballgames. We are tremendously excited to be here at a great venue. It’s my first time in the stadium as its been rebuilt, I was here back in the 80’s. Our kids are looking forward to every day here.”

Elon Coach Mike Kennedy
Opening Statement:
“I’ll echo sentiments as well, congratulations to all three schools. From what I know of these coaches, these will be three very well coached teams, and will present a challenge for our program. Speaking of Elon Baseball and the season we’ve had, we had some high expectations coming in, there are a lot of seniors on this club. We felt like at the start of the season this was a possibility. We ran through some injuries, and at our level, the mid-major level, its tough and challenging. Brian [O’Connor] will tell you, even at the ACC level, when you lose players it takes a toll on your team, and we went through some of that. We had a stretch where we had a tough part of our schedule when we played Carolina three times, then followed that up with Mark [Scalf] and his club at [UNC] Wilmington when they were playing extremely well and then went over to Louisville when they were playing well. We did fair to well, and I thought that took a toll on our club. We didn’t respond too well, but we hung in there and kept fighting. We finally peaked at the right time - we got a few guys healthy and a few guys back, and played extremely well. We’ve got quality starting pitching. We feel like we have a chance to be in some games, and that’s important obviously in an event like this. We are pleased to be here and very excited. We know we are going up against three very well coached teams and that we are going to have to play well to compete. We are looking forward to that challenge.”

Coach O’Connor (Virginia)
On the level of play across conferences:
“This is what’s great about college baseball. There’s no other sport that you have college baseball programs competing at the highest level of college baseball. You know a lot of teams can compete in the highest level of college baseball. You see teams in the College World Series, Cal State Fullerton, that aren’t competing in basketball or football for national championships. Even though in my time at Virginia we’ve only played [UNC] Wilmington, Elon and Army once, I know the caliber of these programs. The fact that someone isn’t from the SEC, ACC, Big 12, PAC-12, in our sport, it’s a non-factor. There are great coaches and great players at all these school. This weekend, just like any other weekend, we are going to have to play great baseball in order to have a chance to move on.”



On starting Brandon Waddell on the mound:
“I’m very comfortable starting Brandon Waddell tomorrow. He started the opening game of our season as a true freshman. We could tell pretty quickly when this young man got here that he had a tremendous amount of poise, he’s a really good athlete, not much phases him. The fact that this is his first NCAA tournament that he’s played in, and the fact that he’s getting the ball in the opening game, one, he deserves it, he started on Friday for us all year long. I think he’s pretty good, and he’s got the poise and maturity to handle the situation.”

Coach Sottolano (Army)
On starting Chris Rowley on the mound:
“I’d like to think that Chris is a well-respected athlete, a fierce competitor. Chris will throw tomorrow, and we are looking forward to having him get back on the mound again. Whether it’s in the NCAA Regional, the first game of the year, the middle of the year, conference, conference championship, it’s still another baseball game. Having been here for another year, I think Chris is looking forward to that opportunity.”

On the team’s journey this year:
“The year started out a little more difficult than we’d like, it’s a very young team. We had some really good pitching, I’m thinking Chris [Rowley], Gunnar Carroll and those types of guys, and it was through the ups and downs, just like anyone else goes through. We had some injuries and those types of things, but we fought through it. We became much closer as a club - I think the leadership at the academy really helped. Guys pulled together in adverse times and developed a little bit of tenacity and toughness along the way. The key for us is to get a lot of two our RBIs, compete, put guys in scoring position, get guys moving and doing things that could make things happen. That’s not always an easy thing to do when the other team is throwing a ton of strikes and picking up the baseball, it’s not always easy. We really have to be tough and disciplined in order to be successful, and that sort of came through at the end of the year.”

On returning to Virginia for the Regional:
“I think all of our programs talk about being successful year in and year out. There are teams that make it to the regionals every once in a while and are successful every once in a while. Programs sustain, you look at Elon, you look at [UNC] Wilmington, you look at Virginia, they’ve sustained. I like to think that we’ve developed that reputation over the last several years. I hope so. It’s something we talk about in the recruiting process - it’s something we are going to talk about in the years to come. I don’t know if there was a bright-eyed [feeling] last year, I think it’s something you can develop within the culture of your club, to expect it. I think you don’t take it for granted. But you expect it to be here and you expect to try to compete. The biggest thing for us, when you get to this level, just like any other day, we want to play well. We like to say every day in our program’s championship day, whether it’s practice or whether it’s a game. So tomorrow is another day, and we have to take it as such.”

Coach O’Connor (Virginia)
On Mike Papi’s development:
“Mike Papi’s development this year is really a great lesson to all players on our club, or on any club. Here’s a kid who last year was hitting in our cleanup spot as a true freshman, the first 30-40 percent of the year, then didn’t play much the back half of the year last year. He comes back this year and he’s not in the starting lineup for the first 15 or 18 ballgames. One might say he’s a little buried, Papi’s not getting any time. Then we go all the way down to Clemson and all of a sudden you plug him in there for a couple ballgames and you get some game winning hits, you get a four-hit day, and then he goes on and has an all conference kind of year. There’s a great lesson in there for all the players that you might feel like things aren’t going your way, and you’re not getting your opportunities, but if you hang in there and have the right attitude that there’s a chance it’ll work out for you, that’s why it’s worked out for Mike Papi. Because he had the right attitude even when he wasn’t playing, and he was prepared for his opportunity. His development this year has been pretty impressive. It’s been fun to watch, he’s as good as anybody that we’ve had.”



Coach Kennedy (Elon)
On depth and confidence from running through the Southern Conference Tournament:
“Certainly getting through that gives us energy and life. We’re here, and without that we’re not here. Certainly it’s a big lift in itself. We found out some things about some kids in terms of toughness, maybe we hadn’t put them in that role before, and in an event like this you can bring them back a little earlier than you would all year. I think you learn a few things about some kids that you haven’t done because when you’re playing your three game set during the year, you’re not doing those kinds of things and you’re managing totally different. We were put in a position where our backs were against the wall a little bit, and we asked some things out of some kids that we normally wouldn’t, and they responded very well. We know that there’s some stuff in there that these kids can dig from and learn from and apply to this situation if we are given that situation. I think we learned a lot from it.”

Coach Scalf (UNC Wilmington)
On the CAA’s strong presence in the NCAA Tournament:
“Our league was very good this spring. A number of players that have grown and matured over the last couple years in several programs - Towson played extremely well, you look at their record and say what are you talking about? They’re 29-28, but they’re a solid club. Defensively, I don’t know that there’s anyone better than them defensively. They may be a little short pitching depth wise, but they are a very good club. Northeastern’s pitching may be as good as anybody’s on the East Coast, their top five guys. Georgia State played very well, William & Mary’s pitching and position players figured out a way to get it done every day and they play extremely hard. Our league continued to grow through the course of the year. I feel like we are headed in the right direction, getting back to where we were at one time. In the late 90’s, early 2000s, our league was anywhere from the third to the fifth best in the country RPI wise. We lost some schools and had some changes, and baseball wasn’t quite as important to some. Now, I think there are quality coaches throughout the conference, and a number of very good players. I’m excited about the fact that College of Charleston, of course Elon and Mike [Kennedy’s] group which will be coming in the fall certainly improve our conference even more.”

On the win against North Carolina:
“Hopefully it continues to give them the confidence necessary to compete against some of the best teams in the country. We did that on the road, anybody that saw that game knows that we were pretty ugly the first three innings - it was not pretty. We didn’t play well and were down 6-0. We found a way to work back [into the game] and score six to tie it in the fourth [inning], and then we had great pitching and played defensively the rest of the way - then had a couple big two-out knocks. It’s the toughness part that Brian [O’Connor] Mike [Kennedy] and Joe [Sottolano] have talked about with all the kids. It is just a matter of hanging in there - continuing to work - continuing to stay positive and do it as a group. If one pitcher is struggling on any given day, there’s another one coming out of the pen to pick him up. That’s one plus for our ball club this year, they’ve been there for each other. And they’ve really got a short memory, we’ve had some bad days and they’ve eliminated it and played well the next.”

Coach O’Connor (Virginia)
On what the single most important element is to bring a team success at an NCAA Regional:
“Its consistency, its playing like you have all year. You can’t try to do more than what the player’s ability is. You have to pick up the ball and throw it across the field, you have to throw strikes and you have to get those big two-out hits. If you go back and look at all these past regionals [at Virginia], or if you look across the country – most of the time that is what it comes down to. If you don’t pick up the ball and throw it across the infield and if you don’t throw strikes than you are not going to have a chance. The competition is too high, you are going to face too good of pitching and too good of lineups - you just don’t get away with mistakes like that. I think its just consistent, fundamental baseball play.”

May 30, 2013

What they're saying about the Charlottesville regional...

Streaking the Lawn:

College Sports Madness:
2013 Baseball World Series Charlottesville Regional Breakdown

ESPN:
Snapshots for all 16 regional sites

Charlottesville, Va.

Field: Virginia (1), UNC Wilmington (2), Elon (3), Army (4)
UNC Wilmington ranks 30th in RPI, and I would love to see Mat Batts throw against Virginia. Would UNCW gamble and sit its ace in the first game against Elon? It'd be a brave move, but Batts is the kind of power arm -- 110 strikeouts and 26 walks in 105 2/3 innings -- who would have a chance of shutting down the Cavaliers.
Otherwise, this is a redemption run for Brian O'Connor's Cavs, who shook the stench of losing at home in the 2012 regionals by going 47-10 this season, but even five tomato baths wouldn't wash away the spray of first-round exits at home in consecutive seasons for the Cavaliers. It's not exactly Omaha or bust for them -- although losing to (most likely) Mississippi State at home in the super regionals would still sting -- because they are young and figure to be a top-five team in 2014.
But there's no question Virginia is plenty good to reach the College World Series, and there's no question something will have felt left on the table if it comes up short.


Gchat exchange between myself and my friend [and UVA Baseball superfan] Andrew:

Andrew: BASEBALLBASEBALLBASEBALLBASEBALLBASEBALLBASEBALLABASEBALLBASEBALL
Kendall: cain't wait
Andrew: I am so pumped for this weekend, I can't believe we got such a cake regional
Kendall: i know, i don't want to say it though
Andrew: I'll say it all day, we are the best team in the ACC and we can beat any team in the country
Kendall: i don't want to say "CAKE REGIONAL" and then have to try to put the toothpaste back in the tube if we don't advance, that's all. and while we can beat anybody... i've been a UVA fan for far too long to allow myself the luxury of expectations
Andrew: resilience dawg. this team has fight in it that I haven't seen in any other UVa sports team
Kendall: see, here's where we differ. for me, football and basketball doubt creeps into baseball. we can't have nice things. for you, baseball is autonomous. which i love about you and hate about me, but still
Andrew: I can see where you're coming from
Kendall: it's UVA sports, put on this earth to fucking torture me
Andrew: All I know is that UVa baseball has made me happier than any sports team I have ever followed
Kendall: i agree with you there, and WOW, that's saying something about the sports teams we follow!


So here we go, regional starts tomorrow.  Failure to advance out of this "cake" regional will be a colossal embarrassment.  That's not to say that Army, Elon, and Wilmington aren't capable... but c'mon.  We'll outclass them at just about every position on the field.  Army will pitch their ace against us, an efficient innings-gobbler named Chris Rowley. We faced him in this situation last year, and he melted down a bit in that contest.  Army lost a ton from that team that won 41 games last season, but the ace is back on the mound and he's better than he was last season.  Elon and UNC-Wilminington are both dangerous mid-major teams that have notched wins against ACC foes this season.  But the atmosphere inside of Davenport and the focus that comes from playing in a regional tournament should make us the heavy favorite in any game we play this weekend.

Nervous, but excited.  Anxious.  I'm ready to see us take three straight and blow this regional wide open.

GO HOOS!

May 27, 2013

Bracket Announced!



We're the #6 national seed.  Sweeeeeeet.  Never like to count that chicken before it hatches.

We're the 1-seed in our regional, and face 4-seed Army on Friday.  2-seed UNC-Wilmington faces 3-seed Elon in the other Friday game in the Charlottesville regional.

Wilmington is a dangerous club, and we've struggled at times in our mid-week games against mid-major type teams... but there's no possible way we could have gotten an easier draw in our regional.  The best news is that infamous Wahoo killers South Carolina and Oklahoma are clear on the other side of the bracket (Oklahoma is playing in Blacksburg -- good luck Hokies!) If we can make it to the super regional, Mississippi State or South Alabama would pose a significant challenge.  If we make it to Omaha, we will have earned it.



I'm guessing Brandon Waddell will start on the mound against Army -- that's the perfect opportunity for him to shake off the ugly start against VT in Durham.  Then Silverstein on Saturday, hopefully for a chance to go 2-0 and walk into Sunday with a nice, fresh assortment of arms.  Nick Howard, Whit Mayberry, Josh Sborz, and Trey Oest give us a lot of starting options at that point.  We might not have the best ace-level starters, but we boast a huge arsenal of startable arms.  Sistema Peralta!

Of course, the pitching could take a back seat to our offense if we hit the way we can hit.  Our lineup from 1 to 9 is maybe the best we've ever had at UVA, assuming Cogswell is back from his broken finger.

Here's a great piece from Jeff White that can kind of clue you in on how we're playing right now.


Mike Papi is crushing it at a .400 clip, Reed Gragnani never strikes out, Nate Irving is really in a zone right now, Derek Fisher and Joe McCarthy offer great bats with plenty of power, and Kenny Towns is riding high after his extra-innings dinger against Florida State.  We saw Nick Howard and Brandon Downes dump homers over the left field wall in Durham, and Jared King is the grizzled vet with the experience to produce when needed.  It's a potent lineup.

And oh yeah, our bullpen is pretty damn good, as well.  Austin Young is an accomplished innings-eater in middle relief, David Rosenberger has looked good of late, Nathan Kirby has a world of potential, and we boast maybe the best closer in college baseball in Kyle Crockett.

We're locked and loaded.  We'll be better in 2014, but let's see how far this formula of youth and hitting with an ensemble-style cast of pitchers can take us in 2013.

"There's certainly something special about this club."
~Coach Brian O'Connor



How Does the NCAA Baseball Tournament Work?

In case you are REALLY new to following college baseball, here's the scoop:


How many teams make the NCAA tournament?

Just as in the much more famous NCAA basketball tournament, 64 teams qualify for the NCAA Division I baseball tournament every season.


How are teams selected for the NCAA tournament?

Teams that win the 28 conference tournaments receive automatic berths in the tournament. The remaining 36 teams are chosen by a committee of college administrators and coaches based on several criteria, including their record, poll rankings, and schedule strength.


What is the format for the tournament?

Each team is sent to one of 16 regional sites throughout the country. The teams are seeded 1 through 4 by the selection committee, with No. 1 facing No. 4 and No. 2 facing No. 3 in the first round. The teams then proceed in a double-elimination bracket.
After that round, the remaining 16 teams are then split into eight super regionals, where two teams will face off in a best-of-three series. The super-regional winners advance to the College World Series.
The eight teams that qualify for the College World Series are separated into two four-team, double-elimination brackets, playing the same format as in the first round. The winners of those tournaments will meet in one best-of-three championship series to determine the champion.


How is the NCAA baseball tournament different from the basketball tournament?
  • It has the same number of teams and the same basic qualification format, but unlike the basketball tournament, the games in the regionals and super regionals are played at on-campus sites, giving the top teams a home-field advantage.
  • Also, the tournament at each level is a double-elimination tournament that determines one champion. So it’s possible that an NCAA championship baseball team can lose up to four games in the tournament, yet still win. The NCAA basketball tournament is a single-elimination tournament. One loss and you’re out.
  • Eight teams qualify for the College World Series, but just four make basketball’s Final Four.

How does a double-elimination tournament work?

A double-elimination tournament is broken into two sets of brackets, generally called the winner’s bracket and the loser’s bracket. Each team begins in the winner’s bracket, but with one loss, goes into a loser’s bracket, where they will have to play their way back.
In a four-team bracket, which is what Division I college baseball uses, the two first-round losing teams will play in an elimination game, with the loser eliminated. The two first-round teams that won will play each other. The loser of that game will then face the winner of the elimination game.
The loser of that game will then have two losses and is eliminated, and the winner reaches the championship against the team that’s already won its first two games.
In college baseball, the championship finals are set up as a possible two games, because it would be unfair to have the winner’s bracket champion eliminated with its first loss. So while the winner’s bracket champion needs to beat the loser’s bracket champion once to win the tournament, the loser’s bracket champion must win twice.

How are the sites for regionals and super regionals selected?
The sites are determined by the selection committee. Generally speaking, the committee will make the No. 1 seed in each regional the host school, although geographic and financial considerations come into play.
When the committee selects teams for the tournament, they also seed the top eight teams (called "national seeds"), and those eight teams – should they advance through the regional round – will be hosts for the super regional round. If one of the top eight seeds are eliminated in the regional round, then the remaining teams in that bracket will bid to host the game to the NCAA. No matter which team is the host, the teams will each be the “home” team in the first two games of the series, with the “home” team in the final game, if needed, is determined by a coin flip.
The College World Series is held in Omaha, Nebraska, each year.


How do teams make the College World Series?
The eight champions of the super-regionals qualify for the College World Series, which is historically held in Omaha, Nebraska in the middle of June each year.

More about the selection show...



The The 64-team field - including national seeds and regional / super regional pairings - for the 2013 NCAA Baseball Tournament will be revealed at 12:00 noon (EST) today, Monday, May 27, and will be broadcast by ESPNU.  Make sure you tune in today between flipping burgers and squirting mustard on brats.


Assuming the selection committee really goes with the RPI (as shown by granting VPI the right to host a regional), we are in line for a national seed along with UNC, Vandy, LSU, Oregon State, Fullerton... and FSU and NC State?  For those of you new to following college baseball, there are 16 regional hosts, eight of which receive national seeds, 1-8.  If a team with a national seed emerges from their regional, they are then automatically a host site for the super regional -- which pits the champion of two regionals against one another in a best-of-three format.

Assuming we're a national seed - and we WILL be - which of the remaining #1 seeds would we want to be paired up with for a potential super regional? It won't be an ACC team, so it'll be one of Indiana, South Carolina (*gulp*), Oregon, UCLA, Louisville, K-State, or Mississippi State, right? Not a lot of juicy matchups for us at that point.

I'd love a crack at Indiana, but I somehow doubt they make it out of their regional. I want no part of those SEC teams. Oregon could be a fun matchup, especially with them traveling here. UCLA scares me. Louisville would be cool -- it'd give us a preview of future ACC matchups. K-State seems ripe for the picking.

But first things first. Let's see our draw today, and hope we avoid being matched up with Ole Miss, Arizona State, Alabama, Arkansas, or Notre Dame as the #2 seed in the CVille regional.

Meanwhile, here are some helpful links as you follow along at home today.







GO HOOS!

Virginia Selected as Host Site for NCAA Baseball Regional



CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The NCAA announced today that Charlottesville, Va., has been selected as one of 16 regional host sites for the 2013 NCAA Division I Baseball Championship. The four-team, double-elimination tournament will run May 31-June 3 at Virginia’s Davenport Field. Two games each will be played Friday (May 31), Saturday (June 1) and Sunday (June 2). If necessary, a single game will be played Monday (June 3). Regional game times will be announced Monday.

The remaining at-large teams, top-eight national seeds, first-round regional pairings and site assignments will be announced at noon Monday on ESPNU. The selection committee will set the entire 64-team bracket through both the regionals and the first round of the Men’s College World Series. Selection of the eight super regional hosts will be announced June 3 at approximately 11 p.m. following the conclusion of the regional round.

The 16 regional sites, with host institutions and records (through May 26) are as follows:

Baton Rouge, La. – LSU (52-9)
Blacksburg, Va. – Virginia Tech (38-20)
Bloomington, Ind. – Indiana (43-14)
Chapel Hill, N.C.– North Carolina (52-8)
Charlottesville, Va. – Virginia (47-10)
Corvallis, Ore. – Oregon State (45-10)
Columbia, S.C. – South Carolina (39-18)
Eugene, Ore. – Oregon (45-14)
Fullerton, Calif. – Cal State Fullerton (48-8)
Los Angeles, Calif. – UCLA (38-17)
Louisville, Ky. – Louisville (46-10)
Manhattan, Kansas – Kansas St. (41-17)
Nashville, Tenn. – Vanderbilt (51-9)
Raleigh, N.C. – North Carolina State (44-14)
Starkville, Miss. – Mississippi State (43-17)
Tallahassee, Fla. – Florida State (44-15)

By virtue of being awarded a regional, all 16 host institutions also have been selected to the 64-team field.

Virginia will serve as a regional host site for the fourth-consecutive year and the seventh time in the last 10 years (2004, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013). UVa is one of three schools nationally to host a regional each of the last four years, joining South Carolina and UCLA.

UVa will make its 10th-consecutive appearance in the NCAA tournament and its 13th all-time.


Ticket Information
The Virginia Athletics Ticket Office will be open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Memorial Day. Ticket books may be purchased in person at the Virginia Athletics Ticket Office in Bryant Hall, by calling the Ticket Office at (800) 542-8821 or logging on to VirginiaSports.com.

As of Friday afternoon, approximately 2,500 ticket books had been sold for the regional round as well as a potential super regional tournament. Davenport Field will seat 4,956 for postseason play.

All-session General Admission ticket books are currently on sale for $45 for the regional and $24 for a potential super regional. All-session Reserved ticket books are available for $60 for the Regional and $36 for the Super Regional.

New for the 2013 postseason, seating in the left- and right-field bleachers will be reserved. Again this year, all seating in the grandstands and bleachers along the first-baseline will be reserved. General admission tickets are valid for the grass hillside along the left-field line and for standing room only.

Fans are strongly encouraged to purchase tickets in advance, as it is the only way to guarantee they will be able to attend all tournament games.

Customers ordering tickets from now until game day may pick up their tickets during regular business hours at the Virginia Athletics Ticket Office in Bryant Hall through noon Friday or at Davenport Field Will Call on game day beginning two hours prior to the first session of the day.

If available, single-session tickets for the regional will go on sale to the public on Friday (May 31) from 9 a.m. to noon by phone and online. If available, single-session tickets will be $12 for Reserved and $8 for General Admission. Any remaining single-session tickets for a potential super regional would go on sale on Friday, June 7 at 9 a.m. and will be $16 for Reserved and $12 for General Admission.

Ticket sales at Davenport Field begin two hours prior to the first session each day and end at the top of the seventh inning on the last session each day. Fans may upgrade from General Admission to Reserved on game day, subject to availability, at the Davenport Field ticket windows for $4 per ticket.

For further information on NCAA baseball tournament tickets, please call the Virginia Athletics Ticket Office at (800) 542-8821 or log on to VirginiaSports.com.

Parking
All parking will be paid parking for the entire postseason. Parking on game day will be $5 in the University Hall, John Paul Jones Arena and McCue Center lots. The John Paul Jones Arena parking lot and garage will not be available for baseball parking on Friday (May 31) and Saturday (June 1) because of events at the arena.

Pre-paid parking permits will be valid in the University Hall parking lots. Pre-paid parking permits are sold out.

Parking will be free throughout the tournament in the Emmet/Ivy Garage.


May 24, 2013

GO JACKETS!

The Georgia Tech/Virginia Tech baseball game just started, and it has huge implications on Virginia's chances to win the ACC Championship.

Virginia Tech (?!) wins Pool B with a win over GT.

Georgia Tech will win Pool B with a win over VT and a Virginia loss to FSU tomorrow.

Virginia will win Pool B if Georgia Tech beats Virginia Tech this afternoon and Virginia beats Florida State tomorrow.

So, for today at least, let's go Ramblin' Wreck!


I was wrong...

...to have ever questioned Scott Silverstein.  Having witnessed his 8 and 2/3rds innings masterpiece in Durham yesterday, not only do I continue to eat crow, I continue to enjoy it immensely.  Our hard-luck senior hurler has become the best battler on the staff, and the most likely ace for the postseason.  I have no idea if Georgia Tech will beat Virginia Tech this afternoon and give us a crack at the ACC championship, but if we get that shot it'll be because Silverstein willed us to a win yesterday.



I was also wrong to have posted this year ago: The Sims Effect.  It recently came up on the 247 Blue Board, in the UVA/VT Rivalry thread.  Hokies were using it to bash Hoos for being too optimistic about Phillip Sims when he transferred in.  My fellow Hoos even thought it was ridiculous and funny.  That's fine, and I'd be a liar if I said I wasn't a little bit embarrassed.  That said, I was excited about UVA getting a 5-star quarterback, because, well... we NEVER get 5-star quarterbacks.  Of course it hasn't worked out, and of course Sims will probably transfer, but I won't apologize for being excited when the announcement was made a year ago.  I will apologize for visiting the Blue Board, as it's a place where only scumbags and morons visit.

Having one of my blog posts used to ridicule UVA fans was admittedly a bad moment in the history of Wahooze.  In fact, I briefly considered shutting down the blog altogether.  But that was stupid, and in the end if you don't like what I write here, then just don't fucking read it.  Wahooze makes me happy, and I know it makes at least a few of my friends happy, so we will press on undeterred.  Maybe I have less time to post now that I'm a long-distance commuter, but Wahooze will march forward.


Finally, I was wrong to ever doubt the men's tennis team.  Of course, I still think the sport of tennis is pretty dull and lame, but this is the opposite of dull and lame:


Congrats to the tennis team, and congrats to UVA on yet another national championship!


May 21, 2013

2013 ACC Baseball Championship Schedule




Under the pool-play format, each team will play one game against each of the other three opponents in its pool Wednesday through Saturday (May 22-25). The two teams with the best records within their respective pools will advance to the title game on Sunday, May 26, with the winner earning the ACC's automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament.

UNC (47-8, 21-7 ACC) earned the No. 1 overall seed and will head up Pool A. The Tar Heels will be joined by fourth-seeded NC State (42-13, 19-10), fifth-seeded Clemson (39-17, 18-12) and eighth-seeded Miami (35-21, 14-16).

Florida State (44-11, 20-10) earned the No. 2 overall seed and will be joined in Pool B by third-seeded Virginia (45-9, 22-8), sixth-seeded Virginia Tech (35-19, 15-14) and seventh-seeded Georgia Tech (33-23, 15-15).The championship game between the Pool A and Pool B winners will be played Sunday at 1 p.m.

2013 ACC Baseball Championship Schedule:

Wednesday, May 22
11 a.m. - #2 Florida State vs. #7 Georgia Tech (RSN)
3 p.m. - #3 Virginia vs. #6 Virginia Tech (RSN)
7 p.m. - #4 NC State vs. #5 Clemson (RSN)

Thursday, May 23
11 a.m. - #3 Virginia vs. #7 Georgia Tech (RSN)
3 p.m. - #1 North Carolina vs. #8 Miami (RSN)
7 p.m. - #2 Florida State vs. #6 Virginia Tech (RSN)

Friday, May 24
11 a.m. - #4 NC State vs. #8 Miami (RSN)
3 p.m. - #6 Virginia Tech vs. #7 Georgia Tech (RSN)
7 p.m. - #1 North Carolina vs. #5 Clemson (RSN)

Saturday, May 25
11 a.m. - #2 Florida State vs. #3 Virginia (RSN)
3 p.m. - #5 Clemson vs. #8 Miami (RSN)
7 p.m. - #1 North Carolina vs. #4 NC State (RSN)

Sunday, May 26
1 p.m. - ACC Championship (ESPN2)


Behind Enemy Lines: BYU


Work took me out to Salt Lake City last week. On these trips most people don't know where the heck Charlottesville is, however this trip was a different story, and got me some insight into our opening game against BYU. For those of you that don't know, BYU and the University of Utah are HUGE rivals, and aside from the Jazz there is nothing but these two in Salt Lake. They hate each other. Anyway back to us. One of the guys I was meeting with was a huge Utes fan and not only knew where Charlottesville was and that there is a college there, but also knew we were playing BYU in our first game. Despite my persistent mentioning of how unpredictable we are on the field, he gave me some keys to beating BYU, which I will share with you all now.

Tip 1: Kyle Van Noy is No Joke:
Literally the first question I was asked was "How are your tackles?" Van Noy apparently is a surefire first round pick. BYU is known for their defense over the last few years, including producing Pierce's new favorite player Ziggy Ansah. But Van Noy apparently is the best of all the prospects they've turned out. From his outside linebacker position Van Noy is solid in coverage, and a machine getting to the QB. In the Poinsettia Bowl Van Noy showed out with 8 tackles, 1.5 sacks, 3.5 tackles for loss, a forced fumble, an interception, a blocked punt and two touchdowns. WHAT? UVA will need to keep him in check. This will be a good early season test for Big Mo.


Tip 2: The Taysom Hill Hype Machine
When we got to talking about the BYU QB it sounded a ton like listening to one of us describe Logan Thomas. Taysom Hill is being hyped up as the next Steve Young coming out of Provo. However he does have a balky knee. This should be an interesting test for the high pressure defense. Getting a ton of hits on this kid will be key to shaking his confidence.


Tip 3: BYU O-Line is Replacing a Lot of Guys
This sounds familiar! Apparently the inner OL in Provo is going through a ton of changes, and we should look to attack them up the middle.


So what should we make of this? Well this is a game that sets up as a defensive struggle. If we play well, this is the kind of game that will make us love the new defense. From what I gathered, the key to the game on defense will be getting pressure on Taysom Hill, and keeping him contained.  The more mistakes we can get Hill to make the better. I'm sure Fairchild and TOB are already scheming up a way to try to take Van Noy out of the game. Containing him is going to be a huge key.


Not sure how I am feeling going into this game, but I'm slowly getting more confident.

May 1, 2013

A Brief Recap of the Lacrosse Team's Season


Not much to say. The Hoos lost in the ACC Championship to a very good UNC team, after completely abusing Maryland in the semi-final game. The ACC tourney performance was much better than most of the regular season, as the boys are not eligible for the NCAA tournament due to their sub-.500 record. Injuries, inconsistent play in the midfield/goal (really everywhere), poor shooting, and the toughest schedule in the country are all to play. Stellar recruiting class coming in next year, we'll bounce back.