The Wolfpack’s conference slate begins with two strong wins before dropping the series finale to the Eagles.
NC State (13-3, 2-1 ACC) entered this weekend with a lot of momentum with several games in which the Wolfpack recorded double-digit runs. The team used that to propel it past Boston College (6-8, 1-2 ACC) for wins in the first two games. However, the Eagles took the win in the final game of the three-game set.
Game One: NC State 2, Boston College 1
The Wolfpack came close to dropping the team’s first conference game, but an eighth-inning rally was enough as State edges past the Eagles Friday afternoon, 2-1.
Sophomore shortstop Will Wilson provided the Pack’s only runs with a two-run home run in the bottom of the eighth. The four-bagger was the Kings Mountain, N.C. native’s lone hit of the game.
Senior left-handed pitcher Brian Brown got the call to start and surrendered an unearned run in 7-1/3 innings of three-hit baseball. The Glenmoore, Pa. southpaw struck out six Eagle batters before freshman right-hander Reid Johnston (1-0, 2.13 ERA) came in to finish the eighth. Johnston earned the win in his short tenure while sophomore lefty Kent Klyman pitched a perfect ninth to earn his first save of the year.
Eagle freshman outfielder Chris Galland scored the first run of the game in the top of the fifth. Galland reached on a two-out error and stole second in the next at-bat. After a walk, a ground-rule double by sophomore infielder Brian Dempsey pushed Galland across the plate.
State was held quiet until the eighth. Senior center fielder Josh McLain reached on a one-out double. Two batters later, Wilson played the hero as his two-run bomb gave the Pack the edge it needed to win.
Game Two: NC State 13, Boston College 7
The bats came alive for the Wolfpack as the first game of Saturday’s double header resulted in a dominant win over the Eagles, 13-7.
Graduate student right-handed pitcher Johnny Piedmonte started on the mound, but the Davidson, N.C. native was chased after giving up three runs in 1-2/3 innings of work. Sophomore right-hander Mathieu Gauthier followed with 2/3 inning on the rubber, giving up a run in the process.
Freshman southpaw Nick Swiney (2-0, 1.23 ERA) followed Gauthier and picked up the win on three innings of work. After 1-2/3 innings of relief by junior righty Nolan Clenney, Klyman pitched the final two innings to pick up his second save of the season.
Boston College already scored three runs before the Wolfpack got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the second. Redshirt sophomore third baseman Dillon Cooper reached on a one-out single before senior first baseman Shane Shepard drilled a two-run homer over the wall in left.
After another Eagle run was scored in the top of the third, two more Pack runs came across in the bottom of the inning. Back-to-back singles by Wilson and sophomore designated hitter Brad Debo set up freshman catcher Patrick Bailey for an RBI single that drove Wilson home. Senior right fielder Brock Deatherage followed with a bunt single that resulted in Debo scoring on an errant Boston College throw.
The Wolfpack took the lead in the next inning as four runs came across to score. McLain led off with a double before junior left fielder Brett Kinneman plated him with a single. Following a Wilson single, Debo singled to drive Kinneman home. Three batters later, Cooper drove Debo and Wilson home with a single into right-center.
NC State struck once again with two more runs in the seventh. Freshman second baseman J.T. Jarrett and McLain led off with singles before Wilson joined the single parade two batters later. With the bases loaded, Bailey followed with an RBI walk, scoring Jarrett. Deatherage took a beanball that drove McLain home in the next at-bat.
The final three insurance runs for the Pack came in the eighth. Shepard drew a leadoff walk before Jarrett followed with a bunt single. After sophomore outfielder Lawson McArthur entered the game to pinch-run for Shepard, Wilson doubled to drive McArthur and Jarrett home three batters later. Debo drove Wilson home with a single up the middle following Wilson’s two-run double.
Game Three: Boston College 11, NC State 3
Not wanting to give the Pack the satisfaction of a sweep to start conference play, Boston College lit up State’s pitching for seven runs in the third inning. The Eagles dominated the Wolfpack in the bottom half of Saturday’s double-header, 11-3.
Eagle senior right-handed pitcher Brian Rapp (2-1, 3.22 ERA) picked up the win after seven innings of two-hit shutout baseball. Meanwhile, freshman left-hander David Harrison (0-2, 5.40 ERA) took the loss after giving up eight runs in 2-1/3 innings.
Johnston and redshirt freshman lefty Connor Centala gave up the Eagles’ three remaining runs in two combined innings. Gauthier, freshman lefties Evan Justice and Cole Hooper, redshirt senior righty Joe O’Donnell, and Kinneman pitched the final 4-2/3 innings.
Kinneman broke the shutout in the bottom of the eighth inning with his ninth home run of the season. Debo added a two-run home run in the ninth after junior first baseman Evan Edwards reached on an error to lead off. However, the Wolfpack only mustered four hits in the ball game. Edwards and McLain each had a single in the series finale.
NC State will return to action Tuesday afternoon as the Wolfpack hosts UNC-Asheville. First pitch from Doak Field is set for 3 p.m.