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Preview Virginia Tech Hokies vs #4 Louisville Cardinals

It's a very difficult series on the way for our ACC basement dwelling Hokies. Saturday - Monday we take on the 4th ranked Louisville Cardinals and the Hokies are going to have to pull out every stop they can find. Pride is on the line here.

Peter Aiken/Getty Images

Virginia Tech makes the road trip over the mountains to the southern banks of the Ohio River to face the Louisville Cardinals in what is, without any doubt in Hokie fans' minds, a must win, any win situation.  Even with the matchup, Tech has to figure out how to stop this losing streak or risk an absolute end to the season after the last game.

We don't have a big recent history with Louisville.  There is a long history between 1979 and 1995, but the nearly annual visits stopped at that point.  Saturday will be the first game between the schools since April 30, 1995, so comparisons are of little use; the gap has officially reached drinking age.

There was a definite advantage to the Hokies over that span with the 57 game record standing at 45-12.  With Louisville recently ranked at #4 it is unlikely that the weekend's games are going to be close to the old domination.  Louisville has a solid winning team and Tech will have its hands full just trying to pull off a win, much less a series or sweep.  Louisville's current record is:

RECORD

Overall

Home

Away

Neutral

All Games

20-5-0

16-1-0

4-4-0

0-0-0

Conference

6-3-0

5-1-0

1-2-0

0-0-0

Non-Conference

14-2-0

11-0-0

3-2-0

0-0-0

The Cardinals have nine batters with an average above .250, and 8 above .300.   Starting Catcher Colby Fitch is leading the team with a whopping .512 batting average (Yes, you read that correctly I did a triple take just to confirm It.) and he isn't the team leader in hits, RBI's and Home Runs.  That honor belongs to Outfielder Cory Ray, whose stats start off with a stellar .336 Average, that's backed up by 28 runs, 36 hits, 32 RBI, and a massive .636 slugging percentage.

The Hokies have to bring a different kind of game to this lineup.  The ACC Currently looks like this:

Atlantic

Schools

Conf W-L-T

Conf PCT

W-L-T

PCT

Florida State

6-1-0

.857

18-6-0

.750

Louisville

6-3-0

.667

20-5-0

.800

Clemson

5-4-0

.556

19-6-0

.760

Wake Forest

4-5-0

.444

17-10-0

.630

Notre Dame

4-5-0

.444

13-10-0

.565

NC State

3-4-0

.429

17-8-0

.680

Boston College

3-6-0

.333

13-9-0

.591

Coastal

Schools

Conf W-L-T

Conf PCT

W-L-T

PCT

Miami

7-2-0

.778

20-4-0

.833

North Carolina

6-3-0

.667

20-4-0

.833

Georgia Tech

5-4-0

.556

19-5-0

.792

Virginia

5-4-0

.556

17-9-0

.654

Pitt

4-5-0

.444

12-9-0

.571

Duke

2-7-0

.222

12-13-0

.480

Virginia Tech

1-8-0

.111

10-16-0

.385

In case you didn't notice that Tech is unfortunately in the basement of both the Costal, and the entire Conference.  We are on track to play a final game on May 21st.  Unless we start getting some ACC wins, well any wins, we are unlikely to make it to the ACC Playoff Tournament.

This weekend the series starts off on with a Saturday 1st game.  The final game will be played on Monday evening at 7pm before a rush home to meet William and Mary for a Military Appreciation Day.  Somewhere in that busy game schedule the Hokies need to salvage a little pride and find themselves on the winning end of a 9th inning.

Short of a miracle, though, Louisville is playing at a much higher level than we are, sort of like a High A team put up against an AAA squad.  Here's hoping for the best.

GO HOKIES!!!!