It took half the game for NC State’s offense to get going, but once it did, Army’s chances evaporated quickly. The Wolfpack’s first hit of the ballgame didn’t come until the sixth inning—it was an Evan Edwards opposite-field two-run home run that gave State a 3-0 lead.
It was an odd game that way—in fact neither team managed a hit over those first five innings, and NC State had been clinging to a 1-0 lead that was manufactured in the top of the first.
Army’s lineup lacks little punch and doesn’t hit for average, either, and these faults were on display as the Knights failed to muster any serious scoring threats against NC State starter Johnny Piedmonte. scoring threat
Knights starter Matt Ball did an admirable job of keeping Army in it for half of the contest, but Edwards’ sixth-inning was the beginning of the end.
NC State added five more runs in the top of the seventh, highlighted by a Josh McLain triple and a Stephen Pitarra double (which nearly got out). That outburst put this one to bed.
State used three pitchers in the game: Piedmonte, Kent Klyman, and Nolan Clenney. It was a little surprising to see a couple of useful bullpen arms get burned here, especially once the game really got out of hand. Neither Klyman nor Clenney figure to be available in the nightcap.
NC State will face 2-0 Auburn at 7 p.m. tonight. The Pack’s got to beat the Tigers twice to advance.