Putting up a couple big crooked numbers is the best revenge; that’s what I always say. And so it went today for NC State, which scored six in the fifth and five in the seventh to erase a 4-0 deficit and advance past Wake Forest in the ACC tournament.
All of the Wolfpack’s runs in the fifth came with two outs, as the Pack made Wake pitching pay for issuing multiple walks in the frame. It was Jacob Cozart’s two-run double that got the offense going, and Josh Hood later put State up 5-4 with a two-run double that was roped into the left-field gap.
Hood struck again in the seventh with a solo shot to left. Dominic Piloli tripled home a run, then Payton Green hit a two-run shot, and finally Devonte Brown closed out the scoring with a solo shot of his own.
NC State led 11-5 at that point, and good thing it found that kind of cushion, because—and stop me if you’ve heard this one before—the bullpen would falter. Chris Villaman entered in the seventh and promptly gave up a pair of doubles and a two-run homer, allowing the Deacs to cut the margin in half.
In the ninth, Villaman had to work around a walk and an error at third base but was able to strike out pinch hitter Kyle Joye to secure the victory.
And it’s a big one, no doubt about that. It was a much-needed boost to the Pack’s NCAA hopes, and it also means that the game against Miami on Wednesday night will be for a spot in the ACC tournament semifinals.