Evan Edwards scored four runs, Tyler McDonough pounded out three hits, Brad Debo and Terrell Tatum drove in three runs each, and the Wolfpack pitching staff continued it’s recent domination as NC State cruised past Campbell on the road with a 10-1 victory. The win moves the Pack Nine to 8-0 on the season.
Before we get into the specifics of the game, GOODNESS, CHECK OUT THIS EVAN EDWARDS SLIDE AT THE PLATE!!!!
@espn show @NCStateBaseball & @Evan_Edwards16 some love #SCtop10 pic.twitter.com/kMrg5OUbig— Brad Hensley (@bradhen5ley) February 28, 2019
want need to watch that at least four times before you begin to truly appreciate it, then you’ll need to watch it more. Tell your friends about it. Tell your kids about it. Don’t have kids? Tell random people’s kids about it. Show it to your boss and then immediately ask for a raise. It’ll work.
Okay, back to the rest of the game...
After quick three-up, three-down innings by both NC State and Campbell in the 1st, the Wolfpack exploded onto the scoreboard in the 2nd. McDonough reached on an infield single up the middle with one away and Vojtech Mensik walked with two outs to put a pair on for Terrell Tatum. On a 2-2 count, Campbell starting pitcher Seth Johnson tried to beat Tatum with his best pitch - a mid-90’s up in the zone fastball. Tatum (1-for-4, HR, BB, R, 3 RBI) crushed a no-doubter over the right field wall to stake the Pack to a 3-0 lead, a lead it would not relinquish.
Evan Edwards blasted a solo home run in the 3rd inning, also teeing off on a Johnson fastball, to move the lead to 4-0.
NC State starting pitcher Alec Barger cruised through the first two-plus innings, allowing only one Campbell hitter to reach base the first time through the order. With two outs in the 3rd, though, he ran into trouble. A single by Matthew Barefoot, a walk by A.J. Hrica, and an RBI double by Luis Gimenez brought about a pitching change for the Pack. Evan Justice came in to extinguish the Campbell rally, getting a fly out to end the inning.
After the 3rd inning, Campbell didn’t manage another hit until there were two outs in the 9th inning. Needless to say, the Wolfpack pitching staff was awesome. All told, NC State relievers Evan Justice, Reid Johnston, David Harrison, Michael Bienlien, and Cameron Cotter combined to toss 6.1 scoreless innings, allowing just a single hit, four walks, and three hit batters while recording eight strikeouts. Johnston went the longest of all the pitchers with 3.0 IP (he set down eight in a row at one point), while Bienlien was perfect in his one inning, striking out the side on 11 pitches.
Despite the excellent pitching, State still had to work out of bases loaded situations in both the 4th and 7th innings.
Brad Debo drove in State’s 5th run of the game in the 6th inning on a sacrifice fly, scoring Edwards who had reached on a walk to lead of the frame and advanced on a Will Wilson walk and Mensik (1-for-4, BB, R) bunt single.
A pair of Campbell miscues led to a trio of State runs in the 7th. Jonny Butler was hit by a pitch to start the inning and Wilson followed with a hard-fought at-bat that ended with an infield single off the pitcher’s leg. Campbell’s first baseman dropped an easy bouncer by Edwards to load the bases, then Butler (1-for-4, HBP, R) and Wilson scored on an overthrow to home by the Campbell third baseman on a bouncer by Patrick Bailey. Debo lifted his second sacrifice fly of the game, this one to right field, to score Edwards and make it an 8-1 ball game.
The Wolfpack added their final two runs in the top of the 9th. Edwards (1-for-3, HR, 2 BB, 4 R, RBI) again led off with a walk and Bailey (1-for-4, BB, R) followed him up with a single through the left side to put men on first and second with no outs. McDonough (3-for-5, R, RBI, SB) lifted a single into right-centerfield to drive in Edwards thanks to that RIDICULOUS slide (go back up and watch it again). Debo (1-for-3, 2 SF, 3 RBI) followed up with a first-pitch single to left field to score Wilson (1-for-5, R) from third base for the game’s final run.
NC State returns home to the Doak this weekend for a three-game series against a Minnesota program that made the Super Regionals a year ago. The first game is Friday, with first pitch of that game scheduled for 3:00pm.