NC State spotted William and Mary a 4-0 lead but, thanks to Brock Deatherage and an untimely Tribe miscue, scored eight unanswered runs to escape the Doak at Dail with an 8-4 win, its 12th straight over non-conference foes.
The Tribe were the only team to tally through the first five innings and held a 1-0 lead before Colin Lipke, Ryan Hall, and Hunter Smith went back-to-back-to-back in the sixth off Brian Brown to make the score 4-0. After not allowing a home run all season, Brown has allowed six in his last two starts.
Deatherage cut the lead in half with a two-run bomb to right in the seventh as part of a 2-for-4 day with two dingers. He was the only Pack player to record multiple hits. Deatherage now has 11 home runs on the season, giving State four in double figures (Brett Kinneman 13, Will Wilson 12, Evan Edwards 11).
Terrell Tatum chased Tribe starter Will Strain with a pinch-hit single to start the eighth. Strain probably deserved a better fate than a no decision after allowing three runs on just four hits and fanning seven in seven-plus innings.
After Brad Debo flew out, Tatum took second when Josh McLain walked. Kinneman coaxed yet another walk to load the bags for Will Wilson, who grounded sharply to Patrick Ryan at third. Ryan’s throw pulled second baseman Matt McDermott off the bag, and instead of a routine twin killing, McDermott scrambled back to the bag to get the force, then hurled an ill-advised throw into the stands. Tatum and McLain came home on the keystone cops defensive effort, tying the game and opening the floodgates.
Edwards was hit by a pitch to join Wilson on the bases; Patrick Bailey nearly cleared the bags with a long drive down the rightfield line that hooked foul. He came back with a ground-rule double down the leftfield line to put State up 5-4. Edwards scored on a wild pitch before Deatherage’s opposite-field blast closed the scoring and polished off the pesky Tribe.
The Pack might not have been in position for a comeback if not for the work of Kent Klyman out of the pen. Everyday Kenny K came in with runners on second and third and just one out in the eighth but got Zach Pearson to ground harmlessly to a drawn in infield and then fanned Jason Waldman to end the threat. Klyman struck out two more in the ninth to nail down his fourth win of the season.
Smith, who doubled in the eighth to go with his homer, and Ryan both finished with two hits for a Tribe squad that showed surprising power but fanned 11 times without drawing a walk.
NC State, which won the series opener 5-0, will go for the sweep Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m.