New Baseball America Rankings - Clemson holding at 16, VA drops to 4th, GT up to 2nd, FSU down to 7th. New rankings as always are used below.
Only one big surprise this weekend is that NC State took the series against #1 Virginia. You had to know that the hitting ability of NC State would eventually catch somebody and they did. It was UVA's first lost series this year.
FSU had to rally to avoid a sweep against VT at home, which surprises them but not myself. VT is not a bad hitting club and their pitching was improving against us. FSU and VT are very similar statistically in ACC play, and VT ranks near the top of the league in many offensive categories. FSU's loss combined with our series win over BC puts us up 2 games in the division. VT enters the BA rankings at #25. VT swept the ACC PoW Honors.
Boston College @ Clemson (20-8) - Clemson takes series 2-1, coming back in the 8th to win Sunday. Clemson will face Gawja in two midweek games then Duke. BC will go up against Bryant before getting Maryland at home.
#4 Virginia (23-6, 8-4 ACC) @ NC State (18-10, 5-7 ACC) Series
Friday's game was relatively uneventful until the final three innings. Both starting pitchers pitched extremely well. Virginia starter Danny Hultzen worked six innings and pitched to the first two batters in the seventh inning before being lifted. He gave up one earned run, two hits and two walks and struck out six. After a slow start, he retired 17 straight batters from the first to the seventh innings.
NC State starting pitcher Jake Buchanan fired 6.2 innings, allowing three earned runs, nine hits and one walk while striking out seven.
NC State used the long ball in the 9th against closer Kevin Arico to tie it up, and then the go-ahead run plated in the 11th on a walkoff single to make it 6-5 NC State.
Virginia's potent lineup came back and pounded out 15 hits Saturday in the 8-4 victory. The top 4 in the UVA lineup had 10 hits together. Robert Morey started for Virginia and worked 6.2 innings, allowing four earned runs, eight hits and three walks while striking out five. He earned the win to improve to 4-1 this season. Branden Kline worked out of a seventh-inning jam and then pitched the final two innings to record his second save.
Sunday was a day for the bullpens, as neither starter made it out of the 4th inning. Virginia scored two runs in the ninth inning to pull within a run, but it was not enough to overcome Andrew Ciencin's seventh-inning grand slam which provided the final difference in the 7-6 NCSU win.
UVA UPCOMING: James Madison and Radford, then the battle with Georgia Tech this weekend in Charlottesville.
NC State UPCOMING: Coppin State at home, then to Chapel Hill this weekend.
#25 Virginia Tech (20-10, 6-6 ACC) @ #7 Florida State (21-6, 7-5 ACC) Series
FSU beat #8 Florida 7-2 in Jacksonville and are now 2-1 against the Gators this year. FSU's Geoff Parker and Brian Busch did not allow an earned run in the contest, and struck out 10 batters combined.
Friday's 10-5 Hokie win in Tallahassee broke the Noles 8-game winning streak and was the first win for VT down there since 1989.
"This was just a game that Virginia Tech totally took it to us," said head coach Mike Martin. "From the very beginning, starting in the second inning, they took the game to us. I thought we were going to make a game out of it, when we got three in the fourth to put ourselves at least in striking distance. It's 8-3 and there are still 18 outs to get. I told myself that we were going to come back out and win this thing. What happens...we get two outs and two strikes and they turn around and get two runs. Credit Virginia Tech, they did an outstanding job."
Justin Wright kept the Seminoles off-balanced during his seven innings of work to run his record to 4-3 on the year. The junior southpaw gave up three runs, two earned, with all three runs coming in the fourth. Wright finished the game tying a career-high with 10 strikeouts.
The 10 runs by the Hokies on Friday tied for the most allowed by the Seminole pitching staff this year, while the 15 hits surpassed the previous-high of 13 given-up to Virginia back on March 13. Virginia Tech also set a season-high with seven doubles on Friday night. It marked the most doubles allowed by the Seminoles in school history, surpassing the previous mark of six set on several occasions but most recently against North Carolina in 2008.
The Hokies did all their scoring in the middle part of the game Saturday as all eight runs came off FSU starter John Gast (4-2), who lasted just 4.2 innings. The Seminole bullpen stymied the Hokie offense the rest of the way as Tyler Everett and Daniel Bennett combined to give up just one hit and one walk the remaining 4.1 innings. FSU rallied but couldnt get enough back in the 8-7 defeat.
FSU did have to rally again Sunday to defeat the Hokies and avoid the sweep with a 9-6 win. Florida State never led on Sunday until a pair of two-run home runs in the seventh off the bat of Parker Brunelle and James Ramsey gave the Seminoles their first lead of the game and just their second lead all weekend against the Hokies.
FSU UPCOMING: North Florida in Jacksonville, then to Wake Forest.
VT UPCOMING: NC-Central at home then they host Miami.
Duke (16-12, 3-9 ACC) @ #2 Georgia Tech (25-3, 11-1 ACC) Series
They then took prompt revenge on Duke's middling pitching staff, crushing the Devils 13-3 Friday behind Deck McGuire (W, 5-1). McGuire worked seven innings on the night, holding Duke to three runs on six hits. He struck out five.
The junior right-hander retired nine-straight to start the game, before the Blue Devils picked up their first hit of the game in the top of the fourth inning. Duke cut Tech's lead to one, at 3-2 in the frame, with a pair of runs in the fourth on RBI singles by Jeremy Gould and Will Currier. That was as close as the Jackets would let the Blue Devils get all night. GT put up 8 in the 6th to put it away.
GT continued the slaughter 21-5 Saturday with 24 hits. Tech's one through three hitters - Rowland, Dietrich and Plagman -- brought in 10 of the team's 21 runs on the day. Plagman led all batters with four hits in the game, while adding an RBI. Dietrich went 3-for-4 with two home runs and four RBI. Rowland was 3-for-5, hitting his eighth home run of the season. He drove in a career-high five RBI from his leadoff spot.
Tech hit four home runs on Sunday, led by Chase Burnette's two, in the 9-4 win. The Jackets hit 10 round-trippers on the weekend alone, and hold a conference-leading 63 on the season. In addition to Burnette, sophomore Matt Skole and junior Thomas Nichols also went deep for Tech. Burnette was 3-for-4 with three RBI on the day, while hitting his eighth and ninth homers of the season. Junior Derek Dietrich was also 3-for-4, and added an RBI.
GT UPCOMING: Kennesaw State again, then at Virginia
Duke UPCOMING: W&M, then Clemson at home.
Wake Forest (9-21, 2-10) @ #14 Miami (20-7, 10-2) Series
On Friday, Miami starter Chris Hernandez improved to 4-2 with the 7-4 win over Wake, going seven innings while giving up just one earned run and striking out seven. Michael Dimock dropped to 1-5 with the loss for Wake Forest, who dropped their fourth straight ACC series opener. Eric Whaley and David Gutierrez each tossed an inning in relief of Hernandez.
Stephen Perez led the `Canes with two RBI on 2-for-4 hitting. Yasmani Grandal who was fifth in the ACC with a .411 batting average coming in, went 2-for-5 on the night to notch his fifth straight game with multiple hits. Grandal has now hit safely in 14 of his last 23 at-bats. Chris Peleaz also had another big night at the plate, going 2-for-3 with a homer and his first triple as a `Cane.
Miami stole 9 bases and needed them to defeat WF 9-8 in 11 innings Saturday. After Wake Forest scored two in the ninth to send it into extra innings, neither team got anything going in the 10th. Wake Forest was retired quickly in the top of the 11th before the Hurricanes seized the opportunity in the bottom of the frame. After Zeke DeVoss led off with a walk and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Stephen Perez, Lawson's flare the other way easily scored DeVoss to give the 'Canes the win.
Chris Pelaez drove in four runs and Jason Santana tossed six scoreless to earn the win 10-1 Sunday and complete the sweep. The series victory was the fourth in a row for the Hurricanes to open ACC play - a stretch that includes wins for 10 in Miami's last 11 league games.
Miami UPCOMING: home & home with FAU again, then on the road to Virginia Tech.
WF UPCOMING: High Point, then FSU at home.
UNC (20-10, 4-8) @ Maryland (12-17, 3-9) Series
The Tar Holes lost 6-5 to MD in 11 innings, having now led in 6 of 7 losses after 6 innings. Starter Matt Harvey allowed three runs on five hits while striking out three in six innings of work. Chris Munnelly allowed two runs in two innings of relief. Bates (3-2) fanned three batters in 1.2 innings of relief, taking the tough loss.
"We did not run the bases well tonight and left to many runners in scoring position, and you can not do that in this league," said head coach Mike Fox. "But you have to give them credit, they hit a couple big home runs in the last couple innings."
Mike Cavasinni's three hits and Brian Goodwin's six RBI lifted North Carolina over Maryland 11-4 Saturday. Patrick Johnson earned the win, allowing just two earned runs on five hits in six innings. Carolina bashed 12 hits and matched a season-high with three home runs.
A four-run ninth inning propelled North Carolina over Maryland 8-4 Sunday afternoon. Ben Bunting paced the Carolina attack posting four hits. The Tar Heels earned their first lead in the ninth and never looked back.
UNC UPCOMING: at Elon, then NC State at home.
Maryland UPCOMING: George Mason on the road, West Virginia at home, then to Boston College