Meeting in a non-conference tilt since the teams do not square off in the unbalanced ACC regular season schedule, NC State women's softball pounded North Carolina Wednesday evening in Chapel Hill. Molly Hutchison, Maggie Hawkins, and Hannah Yeager all went yard in the 7-2 Pack win.
Yeager's homer, her first of the season, put the Pack (13-11) up 2-0 in the second. After the Heels (13-12) knotted the score in the bottom half, the Pack's second two-run homer, this time from Hutchison in the third, made it 4-2. Hawkins' three-run blast in the fourth salted the game away. Hawkins now has seven homers and 25 RBI on the season; both marks are good for second on the club behind Tyler Ross.
Seven runs was plenty for Courtney Mirabella, who went the distance to improve to 9-4 on the season. Mirabella scattered seven hits, walked two, and struck out three.
Things are less rosy for baseball, which split a midweek series with Indiana State. After last weekend's punchless performance against Boston College, it was good to see the bats come to life. The Pack (14-5) scored 15 runs in the two games, but Cory Wilder got tattooed in game two, and the bullpen wasn't much better behind him, and the Sycamores (11-6) pulled away to win 11-7.
Joe Dunand was the star of State's 8-3 win on Tuesday, going 3-for-4 with two runs and two runs batted in. Ryan Williamson was a bit wild, walking three and hitting two, but he got the win with a two-run, five-inning performance. Chris Williams went two scoreless innings in the game and 1.2 more shutout frames in the second meeting. Williams has a 13.1 inning scoreless streak to begin the season largely due to having issued just one walk all year.
Walks are always a problem for Wilder, who issued three in 3.1 innings against the Sycamores. Getting hit hard has not been an issue for the aptly named righty, but he was shelled for six in his short outing. Wilder was charged with the first six runs and Cody Beckman, who had been throwing the ball well until today, gave up three more without recording an out.
Evan Mendoza and Stephen Pitarra seem to have put an end to the revolving door at the hot corner and second base (to the expense of Ryne Willard and Xavier LeGrant). Pitarra had three hits to raise his average to .349, though all 15 of his hits on the year have been singles. Mendoza had a pair of hits and is second to Andrew Knizner (.360) on the team with a .353 mark.
Baseball opens a weekend series with Notre Dame on Friday at 6:30 at the Doak. Softball hosts Bryant, IUPUI, and Ohio in a weekend tournament.