NC State takes down Clemson in series opener
Posted 10:49 p.m. Thursday
Updated 11:59 p.m. Thursday
Raleigh, N.C. — With the score tied 2-2 in the bottom of the eighth, junior Joe Dunand raced home to score the go-ahead run on a wild pitch to lift the NC State baseball team to a 3-2 win against No. 12 Clemson in the series opener Thursday night at Doak Field at Dail Park.
NC State remains red-hot, as the Wolfpack has now won 12 of its last 13 games and seven consecutive Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) games to move to 32-21 and 15-13 in conference action, while the Tigers fall to 38-16 and 16-12 in league play.
“I told the guys that I’ve been doing this a long time and I’ve been a part of a lot of great games over the years and that was one of the best games I’ve ever been in,” said head coach Elliott Avent. “It was really intense on both sides with a lot of emotion shown by both teams. That’s what college athletics is all about and I thought both teams laid everything out on the field and I’m fortunate we got the win tonight.”
The 12th-ranked Clemson Tigers struck first in the contest, as Weston Jackson hit a solo home run over the left field wall to give the visitors a 1-0 advantage. NC State countered in the bottom half with a pair of runs to grab a 2-1 lead.
With runners at second and third, Wolfpack junior Andy Cosgrove ripped a two-RBI single through the left side to extend his hitting streak to eight games, the longest active streak on the team.
Clemson answered in the top of the fourth after a solo homer from Seth Beer, the 2016 ACC Player of the Year, to even the score at two apiece.
In the bottom of the eighth, Dunand raced home to score on a wild pitch to give NC State a 3-2 lead. The Miami, Fla., native doubled to start the frame and moved over to third on a groundout to score on the two-out wild pitch.
On the Mound
- The NC State bullpen threw five innings of scoreless relief, as Austin Staley (2-3) picked up the win for the Wolfpack with a scoreless inning of work.
- Sean Adler slammed the door for the Pack to earn his first save of the season, ending the game with a called strikeout on a 3-2 pitch.
- Johnny Piedmonte started on the mound and pitched four innings before giving way to Cody Beckman, who pitched the next 3.1 innings.
- Wolfpack pitchers did not allow a hit to Clemson batters with a runner in scoring position, as the Tigers were 0-for-7 in that regard.
Inside the Box Score
- Cosgrove led the Wolfpack at the plate with a 2-for-3 outing with two RBI.
- Dunand was 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored, while freshman Will Wilson turned in a 2-for-4 performance with a double.
- Brett Kinneman and Evan Mendoza were each 1-for-3 with a run scored.
NC State and Clemson will return to the field for game two of the series Friday night at 6:30 p.m. at Doak Field at Dail Park.