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NC State improves to 7-0 with weekend sweep of Belmont

COLLEGE BASEBALL: MAY 25 ACC Championship - Miami v NC State Photo by David Jensen/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Pack 9 didn’t have much trouble this weekend, handling Belmont by at least six runs in all three matchups.

On Sunday, NC State got going early thanks to the long ball. Following a Noah Soles walk, Will Marcy scalded one out over the visitor’s bullpen in left.

Freshman catcher Cannon Peebles smacked his first-career homer two batters later to give State a 3-0 lead, which was all the run support that the pitching staff would need. Freshman starter Dominic Fritton pitched 6-1/3 innings of one-run ball, with six strikeouts, to pick up his first college win.

Pitching was the story on Saturday, with Matt Willadsen and company combining to throw a two-hit shutout. Willadsen allowed one hit over 6.0 innings, while striking out eight and walking two. Oregon transfer Rio Britton made his NC State debut with a couple of hitless innings, and freshman Everette Harris closed out the night.

The Pack scored six of its seven runs on a trio of homers: two by Payton Green, one by Carter Trice.

Friday’s 11-4 win was highlighted by Payton Green’s grand slam in the third inning, which put State ahead 6-2. Starter Logan Whitaker didn’t have his best stuff, but Baker Nelson, Sam Highfill, and Carson Kelly combined to throw 5-2/3 scoreless innings out of the bullpen.

Up next, the underwhelming non-conference games continue: Longwood on Tuesday, Radford on Wednesday, then a weekend set against NJIT. That’ll be the last weekend tune-up before league play starts.