Sports, Spring, Baseball

BC Swept at No. 14 NC State in First ACC Series of 2024

The series finale of Boston College baseball’s matchup against NC State on Sunday brought the fireworks on offense, with NC State and BC combining for 81 at-bats, 34 runs scored, and 15 pitcher appearances. The final score resembled that of a football game: 18–16, with the Wolfpack winning and claiming a series sweep of the Eagles.

Despite both teams scoring in six innings, NC State scored three in the bottom of the first inning and did not trail in the game. In fact, the Wolfpack did not trail at any time over the weekend. Wolfpack starter Dominic Fritton struck out two Eagles in a scoreless top of the first, then NC State’s first two batters singled off BC starter Matthew Nunan.

On a 1-2 count, with runners on first and second, Alec Makarewicz homered to left, giving NC State a lead that they would not surrender.

In the third, BC got into the scoring column on a sacrifice fly from Nick Wang, who scored Patrick Roche from third, who tripled to lead off the inning. NC State extended their lead to 7-1 with a 4-run third inning, on two doubles, a single, and a no-doubt two-run home run from Eli Serrano that he sent into the trees behind the right field fence.

The Eagles made it a one-run game with three home runs in the top of the fifth. Nick Wang hit a two-run, 437-foot blast to left, forcing starter Fritton out of the game. Then, off NC State reliever Shane Van Dam, Cameron Leary and Kyle Wolff hit back-to-back solo shots, making the score 7–6 going into the bottom of the fifth.

The Wolfpack responded promptly with a four-run inning of their own, behind a second home run from Serrano, and an RBI single from Luke Nixon.

BC scored ten runs in the final three innings, punctuated by a Roche grand slam in the top of the ninth, and homers from Cam Caraher and Wang in the eighth. NC State stood strong, though, and posted six runs of their own in the seventh and eighth innings, to maintain their lead.

On their fourth pitcher of the ninth inning, Wolfpack reliever Carson Kelly earned the save for NC State, inducing a line out from Parker Landwehr to end the game, stranding the tying run Wolff on first.

In the second game of BC’s doubleheader on Friday, starters A.J. Colarusso for the Eagles and Sam Highfill for the Wolfpack had a pitchers’ duel for the first five innings, each allowing one earned run and striking out a combined 12 batters.

With the score tied 1–1 in the bottom of the sixth, BC’s Michael Farinelli entered the game, and NC State broke the tie with a seven-run inning to give the Wolfpack an 8–1 lead.

The Eagles were unable to make a comeback, as NC State relievers Hollis Fanning and P.J. Labriola combined for four and a third innings of scoreless work, only allowing a hit each. Fanning earned his first win of the season with two and two-thirds innings pitched.

With inclement weather in the forecast for Saturday. Beginning at 3 PM, and with the final pitch of the doubleheader after 10 PM, the Wolfpack secured a series win, winning both games of the doubleheader after 20 innings of baseball.

The first five innings went by with only one burst of scoring, in a four-run third frame from NC State. BC starter John West, who pitched two scoreless to start the game, gave up a double to Pennington and after a walk to Jacob Cozart, a three-run home run by Makarewicz, gave the Wolfpack a 4-0 lead.

West recovered, though, not allowing another run for a total of six and a third innings of work, and the Eagles made it a one-run game in the sixth, scoring runs off RBI singles from Landwehr and Roche.

BC went to the bullpen in the seventh, and Tyler Mudd delivered with four scoreless innings, allowing the Eagles to tie the game in the eighth on a Roche RBI single.

The game went to extra innings, and after a scoreless tenth and top of the eleventh, NC State walked off the Eagles on a Pennington base hit, scoring Soles from third, who tripled down the first base line.

March 11, 2024