BLACKSBURG, Va. - The only thing that could slow down Duke starter Dennis O'Grady on Sunday afternoon was bad weather. O'Grady threw 5.1 no-hit innings and held 15th-ranked Virginia Tech to one run on three hits in seven innings, leading the Blue Devils to an 11-7 win over the Hokies at English Field.
O'Grady's no-hit bid ended with one out in the bottom of the sixth when Brent Zimmerman laced a one-out triple to right field. The junior right-hander went on to throw seven complete innings before the game was delayed one hour and 23 minutes due to rain and lightning. O'Grady (2-4) struck out six batters and did not allow a run until Buddy Sosnoskie followed Zimmerman's sixth-inning triple with an RBI single.
O'Grady contributed two RBI and a run in the win while also stealing a base. He was one of three Blue Devils with multiple RBI, joining classmate Jake Lemmerman, who went 3-for-3 with two RBI, and senior Ryan McCurdy who drove in two runs including a squeeze bunt.
Both Lemmerman and sophomore Will Piwnica-Worms collected three hits apiece for the Blue Devils. Lemmerman drove in seven runs in the series against Virginia Tech with multiple RBI in each game along with homers in games one and two. The Blue Devils tagged Virginia Tech starter Jesse Hahn (5-3) for three runs in four innings and then scored six more off of reliever Joe Mantiply in just one inning.
Virginia Tech (36-16, 16-11 ACC) got three RBI from three-hitter Steve Domecus and three runs from Zimmerman, who walked three times.
Duke scored a pair of runs in the opening frame to take a 2-0 lead. After Piwnica-Worms reached on a fielder's choice, Lemmerman and first baseman Jeremy Gould drew back-to-back walks to load the bases. O'Grady then drove in Piwnica-Worms with an RBI-groundout to third before second baseman Marcus Stroman followed with an RBI-single to left to score Lemmerman.
The Blue Devils added another run in the top of the fourth to go ahead 3-0. Stroman reached when his groundball back to Hahn went in between the buttons on Hahn's jersey. Hahn didn't realize the ball had bounced into his jersey until after Stroman reached safely. After advancing to second on a balk, Stroman moved to third when Domecus tried to pick him off at second. Stroman broke for third on the throw and slide in safely under the tag at third. Two batters later, Stroman scored on a squeeze play by McCurdy.
In the bottom of the fourth, Sosnoskie drew a leadoff walk. Domecus then hit a deep fly ball to the wall in center where Piwnica-Worms made the catch and doubled off Sosnoskie at first 8-4-3.
Duke scored again in the top of the fifth to take a 4-0 lead. After Piwnica-Worms had a one-out standup double down the left field line, Lemmerman brought him home with an RBI-single through the right side.
The Blue Devils singled six straight times to start the top of the sixth and scored four times in the inning to go ahead 10-0. Left fielder Jonathan Foreman led off the frame with a single up the middle. After Foreman stole second, McCurdy drove him in with an RBI single to left. McCurdy would then steal second and advance to third on a throwing error by Domecus before scoring on an RBI-bloop single by catcher Ryan Munger. Right fielder Joe Pedevillano followed with a single to left before Piwnica-Worms laced an RBI-single to left to plate Munger. Lemmerman then lined an RBI-single to right center to score Pedevillano. Two batters later, O'Grady reached on a fielder's choice before stealing second. Lemmerman then scored and O'Grady advanced to third on a wild pitch. Stroman then drew a walk and intentionally got caught in a rundown between first and second, allowing O'Grady to trot home.
Zimmerman broke up O'Grady's no-hitter with one out in the sixth with a triple off the right field wall. Two batters later, Sosnoskie drove in Zimmerman with an RBI-single to left center to break up the shutout.
Lemmerman singled up the middle with one out in the top of the eighth. The Blue Devils then perfected a hit and run as Gould lined a single through the right side to move Lemmerman to third. O'Grady then hit a high chopper over pitcher Ben Rowen's head, scoring Lemmerman and pushing the Duke lead to 11-1.
The Hokies scored three times in the bottom of the eighth to make it an 11-4 ballgame. Domecus had an RBI-double off the centerfield wall. Later in the inning, centerfielder Sean Ryan scored on a wild pitch and Domecus scored when Munger's throw back to the plate was off target.
Domecus added a two-run double and Wates had an RBI-groundout in the bottom of the ninth to account for the final margin.
The Blue Devils will wrap up their season next weekend when they face N.C. State in Raleigh. The series with the Wolfpack starts on Thursday at 6:30 p.m.