Diamond Hawks Race Past NC State, 5-1, With Two-Hitter
Courtesy: UNCW Athletic Communications
WILMINGTON, N.C. – Eight pitchers combined on a two-hitter for UNC Wilmington as the Seahawks topped NC State, 5-1, in college baseball action on Wednesday at Brooks Field.
The Seahawks improved to 25-17 with their fourth straight win while the Wolfpack dropped to 22-27 on the season. The win was also UNCW’s fourth-in-a-row over the Wolfpack at Brooks Field.
Sophomore Justin Bradley (3-3) picked up the win in relief for the Seahawks, who tied a season-high with 10 walks on the evening. Bradley allowed one hit over two innings.
Vance Williams (0-1) suffered the loss for the Wolfpack after allowing two runs on two hits and a pair of walks in two innings out of the bullpen.
Andrew Ciencin led NCSU, who left 13 runners on base on the night, with a pair of hits to lift his season batting average to .310.
UNCW was led by junior Matt Holt’s two hits as he extended his hitting streak to a season-high seven games with a pair of doubles.
The Wolfpack wasted no time in taking the early lead, scoring a run in the top of the first without aid of a hit. Kyle Wilson walked to open the game and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt. Wilson then stole third and scored on Drew Poulk’s ground out to second for a 1-0 lead.
Junior Grayson Evans gave UNCW a 2-1 lead in the third with a two-out, bases-loaded single up the middle. Holt, who doubled earlier in the inning, and junior Ben Thielsen, who was hit by a pitch, both scored on the hit.
After the Seahawks breezed through the NC State lineup for the first five innings, the UNCW bullpen nearly had a meltdown with two pitchers combining to walk four batters, but not allow a run in the sixth. Freshman reliever Steven Davis ended the threat with a bases-loaded strikeout to end the inning and keep the Seahawks in front, 2-1.
Davis fanned the first two batters of the seventh, but walked managed to walk the bases full. Davis, though, escaped any further damage when John Gianis swung at the first pitch he saw and grounded out to third base to close out the inning.
Sophomore Cody Stanley drove in two runs with a two-out double off NCSU reliever Alex Sogard to push UNCW’s lead to 4-1 in the seventh. Freshman Thomas Pope and Thielsen both came around to score on Stanley’s 10th double of the season. A bases-loaded walk to junior Robbie Monday forced in the third run of the inning to give UNCW a 5-1 lead.
NC State loaded the bases in the ninth for the third time on the evening, but freshman Tyler McSwain pitched out of the jam and stranded three. McSwain struck out four while closing out the game with two innings of relief.
The Seahawks visit Clemson on Friday for the first of a three-game non-conference series with the Tigers. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m.