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NC State Sweeps Boston College to Open ACC Play, Win Streak Grows to 9

(Photo via @NCStateBaseball on X)

NC State baseball returned to the diamond on Friday after postponing their mid-week contest with Winthrop due to several players feeling under the weather. Small concerns about player availability heading into Friday weren't loud, but were still audible with Boston College coming to town. Those concerns were muted relatively quickly, as the Wolfpack took both games of the Friday doubleheader to claim the series early in the weekend.

NC State's offense certainly looked to be back at full health, plating 32 runs on the Boston College pitching staff in 3 Games. NC State's arms on the mound continued to grind it out, putting together 2 solid outings on Friday before a shaky Sunday finale. Nonetheless, NC State begins ACC Play 3-0 for the first time since 2019.

Game 1: NC State 5, Boston College 4 (F/11)

RHP Logan Whitaker slotted back into the weekend rotation after beginning the season in the bullpen and he took the ball in Game 1 of Friday's doubleheader. His experience as a weekend starter over the past two seasons was on full display, as he struck out 9 in 5.2 Innings of work.

First baseman Garrett Pennington & third baseman Alec Makarewicz provided all of the run support in the early game, combining for all 5 RBI. Makarewicz, who was hot off his ACC Player of the Week performance, clubbed a 3-run home run in the 3rd Inning, which bolstered NC State's lead to 4-0. The Wolfpack held that lead until the 6th, where Whitaker ran into trouble, giving up 3 runs. Freshmen Jaxon Lucas & Ryan Marohn followed Whitaker in relief, but ultimately surrendered the lead when Boston College tied the game at 4-4 in the Top of the 8th. Freshman RHP Jacob Dudan, as he's done all season so far, answered the call to the bullpen and worked 3.2 innings of scoreless relief and earned the win in the process. In the Bottom of the 11th, Garrett Pennington dropped a walk-off single into centerfield to score Noah Soles to finalize a gritty 5-4 win.

Game 2: NC State 9, Boston College 1

Game 2 of Friday's doubleheader was quietly deadlocked at 1-1 until the Pack exploded for 7 runs in the bottom of the 6th. They never looked back after that. The 6th Inning hit parade was led by RBI base-knocks from Jacob Cozart, Josh Hogue, Chase & Luke Nixon, and Garrett Pennington. This was a situational hitting clinic, as NC State brought 12 batters to the plate in the 6th to effectively put the game out of reach.

Game 2 starting pitcher Sam Highfill worked through bits of traffic in the 2nd & 3rd innings, but otherwise cruised - striking out 7 batters in 4.2 innings of work. Hollis Fanning & P.J. Labriola worked relief in Game 2, with each of them blanking Boston College over the final 4.1 innings. Fanning earned the win.

Game 3: NC State 18, Boston College 16

After a day off due to heavy rain on Saturday, the Wolfpack hosted the Golden Eagles for a Sunday finale. This turned out to be a finale in every sense of the word. An extremely windy day at Doak Field proved to be a launching pad, as 12 combined home runs were lifted up into the jet streams in Raleigh. Fortunately enough for NC State, they were able to take advantage of a couple Boston College miscues and generate enough offense to hold off a late comeback. As worrisome as surrendering 16 runs may seem, this truly felt like one of those wacky high-scoring affairs with high speeds that make college baseball so great. 9 different Wolfpack pitchers saw work and truthfully none of them were able to establish any real consistency in the game. RHP Shane Van Dam earned the win in relief while RHP Carson Kelly saw his first appearance of the season and got the Save.

Up Next:

NC State will host UNC-Greensboro in Raleigh for a mid-week matchup on Tuesday before gearing up for their first ACC Road Series this coming weekend in Atlanta. The Wolfpack look to outduel freshman phenom Drew Burress and the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, who have been working through some bullpen uncertainties of their own.

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