No. 8 NC State (7-2) defeated previously-undefeated UNC-Wilmington (6-1) Wednesday afternoon at Doak Field, 5-2.
The Wolfpack relied on the bats of Chance Shepard and Evan Mendoza. Shepard finished the game 2-for-3 at the plate with his fifth home run in as many games. Mendoza belted his first career home run and ended the game 4-for-4 with a double and two RBI.
Karl Keglovits started his first game on the mound in two seasons but left the game after 2-1/3 innings. The Nazareth, Penn. native struck out three and walked three while giving up an unearned run on two hits. Travis Orwig followed and faced two batters, walking one, before giving way to Chris Williams (1-0) who picked up the win after shutting out the Seahawks on 2-1/3 innings’ work. He surrendered two hits while recording a strikeout.
Evan Brabrand followed with two innings pitched on the mound and surrendered a run on two hits while striking out three before Will Gilbert closed the door on UNCW. Gilbert pitched two flawless innings, striking out three, to secure his first save of the season.
Shepard and the Pack struck first with a leadoff home run in the second inning. The Seahawks responded with a run of their own in the top of the third, but State sent three runs across in the bottom half. With runners on first and second, Shepard singled to send Josh McLain home. Joe Dunand followed with an RBI single of his own, pushing across Andrew Knizner. Mendoza plated Shepard one pitch later to bring the lead to three.
The score remained unchanged until Mendoza led off the bottom of the sixth by ripping a 2-1 pitch over the left field fence to conclude the Pack’s scoring.
NC State returns to action on Friday at 3 pm at Doak Field at Dail Park versus Niagara for the Pack’s first game of the Irish Classic. State will then play against Alabama at 4:30 pm on Saturday at the USA Baseball Complex in Cary before wrapping up Sunday at home against Bucknell.