NC State erased deficits of 5-0 and 7-5 to defeat visiting North Carolina A&T on Tuesday behind a six-RBI performance from Brett Kinneman. Kinneman’s grand slam tied the game at 5-5 in the bottom of the fourth and his two-run triple in the seventh put the Pack up 9-7, and that score held as the final margin. Joe O’Donnell came on with the go-ahead run at the plate with one out in the ninth and induced a game-ending double play for his second save of the young season.
NC State improved to 3-1 while A&T dropped to 1-2. The Wolfpack has a 20-0 advantage in the all-time series.
Dawnoven Smith’s monstrous three-run blast helped the Aggies stake a 5-0 lead off State starter Mathieu Gauthier. Gauthier pounded the strike zone, needing just 60 pitches to get through five innings, but he was touched for six hits and five runs (four earned) in his five frames.
Evan Justice, making his Wolfpack debut, relieved Gauthier and showed flashes of dominance, striking out four in his two innings of work, but he coughed up a two-run job to Adan Ordonez that put the Pack back in a hole before shoddy defense and Kinneman’s heroics allowed State to escape with the win. A dropped fly ball with two outs in the seventh allowed the Pack to knot the score and set the stage for Kinneman’s two-out triple.
The Pack pounded out 13 hits in the contest, with Kinneman leading the charge with three. Josh McLain, Patrick Bailey, Brock Deatherage, and Dillon Cooper had two hits apiece.
NC State returns to action tomorrow at 3 p.m. at the Doak at Dail against the Charlotte 49ers.