I don’t get out to Doak Field as much as I’d like anymore but I was able to make the trek on Saturday night, and while I don’t want to take all of the credit for the NC State victory, well, I don’t think it’s a coincidence that not long after I was thinking “we should really win this game,” Gino Groover hit a go-ahead solo shot to basically win the game.
Fine, maybe Gino Groover had more to do with it. With the game Sunday still pending, he’s already had a hell of a weekend—there was that SportsCenter Top 10 play he made Friday night, and on Saturday he went 3-4 at the dish with a pair of solo shots. Both were impressive. The second gave NC State a 4-3 lead in the bottom of the eighth.
It was a really good crowd last night, with the weather perfect. Weekend series fan support remains outstanding, and it’s very clear this ballpark needs more seats. It was a well-played game that went at a brisk pace, so nobody left early.
Logan Whitaker was outstanding on the mound, striking out eight while walking none over 8 IP; he scuffled in the second when FSU scored all three of its runs but was otherwise dominant. All four of the Seminoles’ hits on the night came in that inning.
Groover got State on the board with a solo shot in the third, and Parker Nolan came through with a two-out, two-run homer in the sixth to knot the score, setting up Groover’s eighth-inning heroics. Sam Highfill closed the ninth, striking out two while working around a walk. It never really felt like the Noles had a rally in them.
That was a lot of fun, though my night’s highlight happened around the seventh, courtesy of an old man ahead of me in the line for beer. As I arrive behind him, the good folks manning the tent were attempting to talk him out of buying a lukewarm beer that they had just put in the ice. I indicated to a dozen or so very clearly ice cold Old Tuffys, and he turned to me and said, “that’s the WORST beer EVER made.” I had a lot of questions, but the matter sounded personal, so I didn’t press on it. He bought his lukewarm beer, I went with a cold Worst Beer Ever.