The Pitt baseball team’s surprising run in the ACC Tournament ended on Saturday with a 5-2 loss in the semifinals to Louisville (43-16). The Panthers didn’t have enough offense or pitching on Saturday.
I was a little surprised not to see senior pitcher Matt Pidich starting for the team. Pidich, a senior, has been the team’s best starter by a considerable margin. He last pitched in the ACC Tournament opener against Georgia Tech on Tuesday and would have been going on short rest so perhaps he just wasn’t ready. Or perhaps Pitt wanted to save him for a potential final. But whatever the reason, the Panthers started Dan Hammer and fell behind quickly.
Hammer lasted only 3 1⁄3 innings, giving up three runs (two earned) and the Panthers fell behind 3-0. They responded in the sixth with two runs of their own but Louisville came right back in the seventh and scored two more to go up 5-2 to provide the final margin.
The Panthers losing to Louisville wasn’t a surprising result. Just a few weeks ago, the Cardinals swept Pitt in a three-game series.
Despite the disappointing loss, it had to be considered a great run for the Panthers, who were playing in their first ACC Tournament. They entered as the lowest seed and went on to defeat Georgia Tech and then pulled off a shocker, defeating No. 1 seed North Carolina.
Pitt ends the season with a 29-26 overall record, marking the first time they finished the season over .500 since joining the ACC in 2014.