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ACC Preview: May 18

Notre Dame (29-20) at #21 Boston College (32-16)

Notre Dame’s resume took a massive hit this past week, following a series with Akron and an extra innings loss to Northwestern at Wrigley Field. They need to beat Boston College on the road this weekend and make some noise in the ACC Tournament to have a chance at making a Regional. Boston College needs to win this series if they hope to host a Regional. Friday's game will be played at Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox for the 11th Annual ALS Awareness game.

Thursday, 5:30 pm: Aidan Tyrell (7-2, 2.87) vs Henry Leake (3-4, 6.66)

Friday, 7:00 pm (ACCN): Blake Hely (3-2, 4.77) vs Chris Flynn (4-3, 5.14)

Saturday, 12:00 pm: TBA vs TBA

#24 North Carolina (33-18) at #8 Clemson (36-17)

After sweeping in-state rival, and fellow bubble team, NC State last weekend, North Carolina is now feeling comfortable about their chances heading towards the postseason. But, Clemson, the hottest team in the country right now, is surging towards a possible Top 8 seed. The Tigers’ Billy Amick was this past week’s ACC Player of the Week, and the likes of Caden Grice, Cam Cannarella, and Will Taylor also remain hot in that Clemson lineup.

Max Carlson made his return to the Tar Heel rotation against NC State last weekend and pitched 7.2 outstanding innings. If he is back near his 2022 form, then Carolina becomes that much more dangerous in the NCAA Tournament. Connor Bovair pitched during the midweek in UNC’s 8-6 loss to #10 Coastal Carolina, but he could be available to pitch on Saturday. The Tar Heels may also be holding him back to start their first game of the ACC Tournament early next week.

Thursday, 6:00 pm: Max Carlson (4-1, 5.69) vs Ethan Darden (3-2, 5.44)

Friday, 6:00 pm: Jake Knapp (4-3, 4.78) vs Austin Gordon (1-4, 4.72)

Saturday, 1:00 pm (ACCN): TBA vs Caden Grice (6-1, 3.60)

#13 Virginia (41-11) at Georgia Tech (30-22)

Virginia won its first ACC series in over a month last weekend after sweeping Louisville, while Georgia Tech vastly improved its resume with a road series win at Duke. Georgia Tech needs another big Top 25 series upset this weekend to improve their chances further, as right now they are on the outside looking in. Virginia is playing for the ACC Coastal Division title but more importantly, they’re playing for a chance to host an NCAA Regional.

Virginia will continue with the pitching plan from last week, keeping Connelly Early in the weekend rotation, while Brian Edgington and Jack O’Connor will both be available out of the bullpen Thursday and Friday. If one or neither is needed, expect to see Edgington get the nod on Saturday after 6 shutout innings last weekend.

Thursday, 6:00 pm: Nick Parker (5-0, 4.32) vs Luke Schmolke (6-3, 7.42)

Friday, 6:00 pm: Connelly Early (10-1, 2.70) vs Aeden Finateri (2-3, 4.07)

Saturday, 12:00 pm: TBA vs Jackson Finley (2-4, 5.63)

Virginia Tech (29-19) at #1 Wake Forest (43-8)

Virginia Tech is all but out of the NCAA tournament after being swept at home by Clemson last weekend. They’ll need at the very least a road series win this weekend at #1 Wake Forest, plus a run to the ACC Tournament final, just to get back into the conversation. Wake Forest has already clinched the ACC regular season title, and they will be looking forward to finishing the regular season strong heading into the postseason.

Expect Virginia Tech to go with Drue Hackenberg and Anthony Arguelles in two of the pitching matchups this weekend. Wake Forest will likely go with their normal three-headed monster of Rhett Lowder, Sean Sullivan, and Josh Hartle. If Sullivan, who missed last weekend with a minor injury, is unable to go, expect Seth Keener to slide into his spot.

Thursday, 6:00 pm: TBA vs TBA

Friday, 6:00 pm: TBA vs TBA

Saturday 4:00 pm: TBA vs TBA

Pittsburgh (23-27) at North Carolina State (31-18)

Pittsburgh's only chance to make the NCAA Tournament is to win the ACC Tournament and steal the automatic bid. The Wolfpack have a decent resume, but after being swept by North Carolina last weekend, they are currently on the outside looking in. They need to beat Pitt this weekend and make some noise in the conference tournament to feel better about their chances. Both teams will need to hold off Louisville to make the ACC Tournament. NC State will likely go with Sam Highfill on Saturday and use Dominic Fritton in a fireman role out of the bullpen.

Thursday, 6:00 pm: Jack Sokol (6-4, 7.39) vs Logan Whitaker (3-3, 5.16)

Friday, 6:00 pm: Logan Evans (5-2, 5.27) vs Matt Willadsen (5-4, 3.10)

Saturday, 1:00 pm: Kyle Mosley (1-5, 7.16) vs TBA

#20 Duke (34-17) at #12 Miami (35-17)

Both Duke and Miami have dreams of winning the ACC Coastal Division and hosting an NCAA Regional. Miami is currently tied with Virginia at 16-11 for the division lead, while Duke sits just a half game behind them at 15-11. Duke's hosting chances have taken a hit, considering that Durham Athletic Park will be unavailable the weekend of Regionals, but perhaps their facilities on campus will be enough should they win this series and win a game or two next week. Miami's chances to host are much better, considering their resume and higher ranking.

Duke will likely continue to go with their "opener"-style rotation consisting of Alex Gow, Andrew Healy, and Ryan Higgins, while Miami will likely go with Gage Ziehl, Alejandro Rosario, and Alejandro Torres.

Thursday, 7:00 pm: Alex Gow (3-3, 4.80) vs Gage Ziehl (7-4, 4.78)

Friday, 7:00 pm: TBA vs TBA

Saturday, 1:00 pm: TBA vs TBA

Florida State (21-30) at Louisville (30-22)

In the course of six weeks, Louisville went from a potential Top 8 seed to a team that likely won't even make their conference tournament. They'll likely need a sweep to qualify for the ACC Tournament and with a two-game deficit to make up, even a sweep may not be enough. Florida State has already been eliminated from the conference tournament, so their season will end upon the conclusion of this final regular season series.

Thursday, 7:00 pm: TBA vs TBA

Friday, 6:00 pm: TBA vs TBA

Saturday, 1:00 pm: TBA vs TBA

ACC Atlantic Standings

1. Wake Forest 20-6

2. Clemson 17-10

3. Boston College 14-13

4. Notre Dame 14-13

5. NC State 10-16

6. Louisville 9-18

7. Florida State 7-20

ACC Coastal Standings

1. Virginia 16-11

2. Miami 16-11

3. Duke 15-11

4. North Carolina 15-11

5. Georgia Tech 12-15

6. Virginia Tech 11-15

7. Pittsburgh 10-15


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