Junior shortstop Devin Hairston had four hits and drove in three runs as the No. 1 Louisville baseball team extended its winning streak to 16 with Wednesday afternoon’s 13-4 victory against Xavier at Jim Patterson Stadium.
The Cardinals moved to 16-0 on the season extending the program’s best start since the 1957 squad, under the guidance of head coach Dr. John Heldman Jr., set a school record with a perfect 17-0 mark. The nation’s only unbeaten team, Louisville also won its 32nd consecutive regular season home game and its 18th straight midweek game.
Hairston equaled a career-high for hits finishing 4-of-4 overall with a double and registered his fifth multiple-RBI outing of the season. With Wednesday’s performance, Hairston leads the Cardinals with 21 RBI this season to go along with a .387 batting average. Senior Logan Taylor added two hits, drove in one run and scored three times, while senior Colin Lyman was 2-of-3 with two walks, two RBI and two runs scored.
Junior lefthander Rabon Martin earned the win and moved to 2-0 on the season after striking out five and allowing one run in 2.1 innings of relief. Freshman lefty Adam Elliott worked two innings of scoreless relief and senior righthander Jake Sparger added one inning of shutout work before sophomore righty Bryan Hoeing had a scoreless ninth inning.
The Musketeers (7-10) struck first Wednesday scoring three runs, including two unearned, on two hits in the second inning. Will Larue drove in the first run with a RBI double to right field before a passed ball and a fielding error by the Cardinals allowed the final two runs of the inning to score.
Louisville cut into the deficit in the third inning with a pair of runs on one hit against Xavier lefty Trent Astle. Junior Brendan McKay plated the first run with a RBI single to right field to score Taylor. Junior Drew Ellis followed with a RBI groundout to second to send Hairston home for the second run.
After Xavier added a run in the top of the fifth on a RBI single by Conor Grammes, the Cardinals gained their first lead of the afternoon in the bottom of the inning with three runs on four hits for a 5-4 advantage. Hairston connected for a RBI single to plate Taylor for the first run before Lyman delivered a two-run single through the left side to send junior Colby Fitch and Hairston home.
Louisville ended any chance of a comeback for the Musketeers with a seven-run seventh inning. Each of the first three runs scored on wild pitches before freshman Jake Snider drove sophomore Josh Stowers home with a RBI groundball. Taylor followed with a run-scoring single to right to send freshman Tyler Fitzgerald home before Hairston added a two-run double down the left field line. Snider chipped in with another RBI grounder in the eighth inning to cap the scoring.
No. 1 Louisville returns to ACC action against Boston College on Friday at 6 p.m., ET at Jim Patterson Stadium. The Cardinals and Eagles are also slated for 1 p.m., ET starts on Saturday and Sunday and admission is free throughout the weekend.
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