The upside of the pool play format is that it saves pitching staffs from being overly taxed, and the downside is you end up with a lot of games that do not matter. Virginia was eliminated from the ACC baseball tournament on Tuesday after losing 3-2 in extras to Florida State.
UVA can finish no better than 1-1 in pool play, and FSU can be no worse than 1-1, and would hold the head-to-head tiebreaker. Further, as the top seed in this pool, NC State need merely match the records of the other two teams in order to advance. So that NCSU-UVA game on Thursday does not matter at all in the larger ACC tournament picture. The NC State-FSU game on Friday night will decide who wins Pool C.
If NC State beats FSU after losing to UVA, all three teams will have finished 1-1, putting the Wolfpack through. NC State would win the pool straight up by beating both UVA and FSU. Either way, it’s that game against the Seminoles that matters.
NC State’s approach to the UVA contest is not entirely straightforward, however—NC State is still trying to secure a spot as a regional host, and every win helps. UVA’s poor RPI wouldn’t look great on the loss side of the ledger but then again might not matter at all depending on how the rest of the weekend goes. Sports!