‘Hoos rally to even series with #9 NC State
Derek Fisher (Fr., Rexmont, Pa.) hit the game-tying two-run home run in the seventh inning, and Chris Taylor (Jr., Virginia Beach, Va.) notched the go-ahead RBI single in the eighth inning for Virginia (18-9-1, 6-5 ACC). Keith Werman (Sr., Vienna, Va.) had a pair of hits to extend his hit streak to 12 games.
Virginia reliever Shane Halley (Sr., Burke, Va.) tossed 1.2 scoreless innings to earn the win and improve to 2-1 this season. NC State reliever Anthony Tzamtzis (2-2) fired 1.1 innings and gave up a pair of runs in the eighth inning to take the defeat.
Both starting pitchers were electric. Virginia starting pitcher Branden Kline (Jr., Frederick, Md.) recorded his third straight quality start. He went 6.0 innings, allowing two earned runs, three hits and two walks while striking out a career-high 10. NC State starter Carlos Rodon worked 6.2 innings, allowing two earned runs, four hits and no walks while striking out a dozen.
NC State (18-7, 7-4) got on the board first in the second inning as Danny Canela turned around a Kline fastball and deposited it over the left-center field wall for a solo homer to lead off the inning.
Virginia got a one-out triple from Colin Harrington (Jr., Johnstown, Pa.) in the fourth inning but wasted it as Stephen Bruno (Jr., Audubon, N.J.) fouled out and Jared King (Sr., Radford, Va.) struck out to end the inning.
Teran Senay hit a two-out solo home run to center field to give the Wolfpack a 2-0 lead in the fourth inning.
Virginia used a long ball of its own to knot the score in the seventh. King bunted his way on to lead off the inning. One out later Fisher crushed a 1-0 Rodon offering to the opposite field over the left-center field wall.
The Cavaliers moved ahead in the eighth inning. Werman hit a ball over right fielder John Gianis’ head for a triple to lead off the inning, and Taylor lined a single to right to score the run. Harrington was hit by a pitch to move Taylor to second. As Stephen Bruno (Jr., Audubon, N.J.) squared to bunt, Taylor stole third which proved key when Bruno grounded into a 6-4-3 double play, allowing Taylor to score.
UVa added a ninth-inning run on a perfectly-executed suicide squeeze by Nate Irving (Fr., Yonkers, N.Y.) to score Mike Papi (Fr., Tunkhannock, Pa.).
The rubber game of the series is at 1 p.m. Sunday.