There were perhaps two things Virginia didn't expect in yesterday's baseball game with Maryland at Shipley Field in College Park: ice-cold weather late in April and a pesky Terrapins team that held the Cavaliers to three runs through seven innings.
In the end, however, Virginia -- which had scored 113 runs in its last 10 games and was playing a team that had allowed 31 runs its last two -- got runs the hard way and defeated the Terrapins, 5-3, in an Atlantic Coast Conference game.
The Cavaliers (24-16 overall, 5-7 ACC) scored two runs in the eighth inning to break a 3-3 tie and overcome a fine complete-game pitching performance by Maryland right-hander Ed Krivak, who had given up four runs in three innings in his last outing.
Although Krivak (2-3) pitched only his team's sixth complete game all season against the high-scoring Cavaliers, the Terrapins did little to help him out. Against freshman righthander Andy Kavulich (6-3), who was virtually untouchable after giving up a three-run homer to Paul Schager in the first inning, Maryland (8-18-1, 1-8) couldn't supply a big enough lead.
In the field, the Terrapins gave up two unearned runs as a result of errors by freshman shortstop Dave Brust, and they allowed the go-ahead run in the eighth on a passed ball.
"When we have been in stressful situations, we haven't had any luck," said Maryland Coach Jack Jackson. "It's frustrating in a sense, when we know what we want to do but we don't have the stoppers to do it."
"It's hard to believe we put a good game together and still can't win," said Maryland freshman catcher Pete McHugh.
Kavulich, who held the Terrapins to three singles after the first-inning homer by Schager, was confident the Cavaliers would find a way to win.
"It was sort of a change-up," said Kavulich of his home run pitch to Schager. "It was one pitch I would like back. But I felt I had a decent fastball and had a couple of good defensive plays in the game. I think we were pretty much in the game. It was a matter of them falling."
The Terrapins began to fall in the seventh, when Virginia's Brad Marwitz doubled home Bill Narleski from second to tie the score at 3.
Krivak got Mike Basara to ground out to begin the eighth, but he walked Corey Miller, who was pinch-hitting for Trip Umbach. After Keith Kowalski flied to right field for the second out, Dave Horton kept the inning alive with a hit-and-run single to right. Miller advanced to third.
"It was something I like to do," said Horton. "The key is that all day he'd been giving me the outside slider. Every time before on two strikes he had thrown me that pitch. Sam Beale, the assistant coach, told me to move up in the box and take away the slider."
The Cavaliers followed with another smart play to push across the winning run. On Krivak's first pitch, Narleski turned to bunt, appearing to distract McHugh behind the plate. The ball bounced off McHugh's glove, and Miller scored from third. Narleski, who was three for six, doubled home Horton to make it 5-3.
"I'm not so sure Bill didn't have something to do with that," said Virginia Coach Dennis Womack of the passed ball. "Bill did it on his own. He has good sense about baseball."
*George Washington 7, American 2: Kirk Warner went three for five with a home run and two RBI to lead George Washington at American. Paul Fienauer picked up the win, yielding nine hits before being relieved in the ninth inning.
*James Madison 3-4, George Mason 2-1: The Dukes clinched the third Colonial Athletic Association playoff spot with a doubleheader sweep at home.
In the first game, Steve Schwartz's single with one out in the ninth scored Nick DeVincetis for the game-winning run. Luke Sable hit a home run in the second game to lead James Madison (29-9 overall, 10-4 CAA).
George Mason (21-18, 7-9) and UNC-Wilmington (8-7 CAA) are in contention for the fourth and final conference playoff spot.