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BLACKSBURG - Senior Brad Markey struck out eight batters over eight frames and scattered five hits to help Virginia Tech baseball to a 4-1 victory over Cincinnati on Friday afternoon in nonconference action at English Field.
Markey, who pushed his Division I career strikeout total to 96, allowed a one-out double in the first inning, but retired the next 16 Bearcats in a row before a two-out single in the sixth.
By that point, the Hokies had already spotted him with a four-run lead, scoring the four in the third inning as the team sent all nine batters to the plate. Miguel Ceballos led off with a double, Saige Jenco walked and Tom Stoffel reached on a fielder's choice - on a sacrifice bunt attempt - to load the bases.
Alex Perez plated Ceballos with a sac fly, Mark Zagunis walked to load the bases, again, and Brendon Hayden came about five feet short of his second grand slam in as many games as his fly ball was caught on the warning track - which resulted in a sac fly scoring Jenco - and Tech led 2-0.
After fouling off several pitches with a full count, Sean Keselica laced a single back through the middle to score both Stoffel and Zagunis to make it four-run advantage.
Cincinnati (2-5) plated its only run in the seventh on a grounder to second by Russell Clark that brought home Ian Happ, who doubled to lead off the frame and moved to third on another grounder.
Markey improved his record to 2-1 with the victory and ran is strikeout-to-walk ratio to 17-1 for the season. Luke Scherzer got all three outs in the ninth to pick up his first save of the year. Matt RIng suffered the loss for the Bearcats and is now 1-1.
The Hokies (4-2) return to action on Saturday to face UMass Lowell in a game that is set to start at 2 p.m., at English Field.
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