NC State finished a seven game road swing Wednesday evening with a win at UNC-Wilmington, downing the Seahawks 8-3. Wednesday’s game was the only non-conference game of that road trip. The win improves the Wolfpack’s overall record to 26-6, while the Seahawks fall to 20-12.
UNC-Wilmington scored the first run of the game in the bottom of the 3rd, scoring an unearned run on NC State starting pitcher David Harrison. UNC-W 2B Jackson Meadows started off the inning with a single, then moved up to second base on a passed ball, and advanced to third base on a sacrifice bunt. Greg Jones legged out an infield single scoring Meadows for the first run. The inning ended with Jones being tagged out at home by Patrick Bailey, as Jones was trying to sneak home after a pitch got a little bit away from Bailey. Thankfully, Bailey recovered to make the diving tag and keep the score at 1-0.
NC State responded immediately in the top of the 4th inning, plating six runs and taking a lead that would not be relinquished. Patrick Bailey started off the inning with a single, but was then forced out at second base on a fielder’s choice on a Brock Deatherage sacrifice bunt attempt. Terrell Tatum singled to put runners on the corners. Dillon Cooper singled to center field to plate Deatherage, tying the game at one, and putting runners on first and second. JT Jarrett followed with a single just over the third baseman’s head on a hit-and-run, scoring Tatum and moving Cooper to third. Josh McLain follwed with a single to score Cooper and push the lead to 3-1. After a pitching change and another out, Will Wilson crushed a three-run home run to center field to put the Wolfpack up 6-1.
The Seahawks cut the lead to 6-3 in the fifth inning on a two-run home run to left field by Zack Canada off NC State reliever Reid Johnston. Greg Jones, who had reached base on a walk, scored on the Canada home run. The Wolfpack got the runs back in the 8th inning. Brock Deatherage led off the inning with a triple, scored on a Dillon Cooper single, and then Cooper came around to score later in the inning on a Josh McLain single.
Reid Johnston (4-0) got the win in relief despite allowing two of the three UNC-W runs. David Harrison pitched well in the start, allowing one unearned run on two hits and a walk over 2.1 innings. Nolan Clenney, Kent Klyman, and Joe O’Donnell combined for 4.1 innings of shutout relief.
Josh McLain (1 run, 2 RBI), Will Wilson (1 run, 3 RBI), and Dillon Cooper (2 runs, 2 RBI) each registered two-hit efforts on the day. Cooper finally broke out of his recent hitting slump with his 2-for-3 day.
NC State is back in action on Friday evening, hosting ACC foe Notre Dame at 6:30pm to kick off a three game series.