Notre Dame beats Virginia, but loses title shot in ACC Baseball Tourney

Tribune Staff Report
ND Insider

Notre Dame took care of business Friday in the Atlantic Coast Conference baseball tournament.

Then the Irish played the waiting game — and lost.

Cavan Biggio hit a two-run triple to help No. 3 seed Notre Dame beat seventh-seeded Virginia, 8-2, in tourney pool play at Durham, N.C. That perpetuated ND’s hopes of finding its way into the title game.

But later Friday, sixth seed N.C. State’s 5-4 upset of No. 2 Miami eliminated the Irish from title game contention and clinched it for the Wolfpack (2-0 in pool play).

With a win over Miami (1-1) on Saturday (3 p.m. EDT), the Irish could forge a tie atop the Pool B standings , couple with an N.C. State loss to Virginia (0-2), but the Wolfpack own tiebreakers over the Irish and the Hurricanes.

Biggio got his hit in the sixth inning off reliever Brandon Waddell to help the Irish (36-20 overall) improve to 1-1 in pool play.

Ryan Smoyer (9-0) struck out two and allowed two runs in six inings. Brandon Bielak allowed two hits over three innings for his first save.

Matt Thaiss had a two-run double in the third to pull the seventh-seeded Cavaliers (34-21) to 3-2. Kyle Fiala followed with an RBI double in the fourth to give Notre Dame a two-run lead, and Biggio's hit broke it open.

Fiala added a run-scoring groundout in the eighth for the Irish.

Waddell (3-5) struck out nine after relieving starter Kevin Doherty in the third.


At Durham, N.C.

Notre Dame 102 102 011 — 8 8 0

Virginia 002 000 000 — 2 6 2

Ryan Smoyer (W, 9-0), Brandon Bielak (7, S, 1); Brandon Waddell (L, 3-5), Matt Doughty (7), Kevin Doherty (7).

2B: Kyle Fiala (ND), Matt Thaiss (V), Doherty (V).

3B: Cavan Biggio (ND).

Records: Notre Dame 36-20, Virginia 34-21.

Virginia's Kevin Doherty (28) dives back to first base as Notre Dame infielder Zak Kutsulis (16) reaches for a tag during an ACC tourney game Friday at Durham, N.C. ( D. DAVIS)