Wake Forest Sweeps Maryland with 4-3 Win
John McLeod came up with a big strike out in the seventh inning.

John McLeod came up with a big strike out in the seventh inning.

March 11, 2012

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Mark Rhine and Brett Armour both blasted their first home runs of the season to help Wake Forest sweep Maryland on Sunday afternoon with a 4-3 win at Gene Hooks Field at Wake Forest Baseball Park.

The victory pushes Wake Forest's winning streak to 13 straight games, marking the longest streak the Demon Deacons have put together since winning 15 in a row back in 1999. The streak is also tied for the second-longest current streak in college baseball, as Kentucky has won each of their first 16 games. No. 1 ranked Florida has also won 13 in a row.

Wake now has a 14-4 overall record and a 3-0 record in the Atlantic Coast Conference. The last time the Demon Deacons swept their conference-opening series was in 2005 when they took all three games at home against Virginia.

Brian Holmes followed up his no-hitter last Sunday with another solid start to improve to 4-0 on the year. The lefty went 6.1 innings, gave up six hits and struck out three batters. Maryland scored two runs against Holmes, but only one was earned. Terrapin starter Brett Harman, who hadn't give up an earned run in 2012, took the loss after surrendering four earned runs to the Demon Deacons.

Armour was the only Demon Deacon with multiple hits in the game, going 2-for-3 with a home run, a double, an RBI and two runs scored. Rhine ended the day 1-for-3 with a homer and an RBI, while Conor Keniry, James Harris, Kevin Jordan and Evan Stephens all had one hit as well.

Maryland scored first for the first time of the series on a fielder's choice in the top of the third inning. The Deacs wasted no time, though, taking their first lead of the game with two runs in the bottom of the third. Armour got the rally started with a one-out double to left center and came around to score on a laser into center field by Stephens.

After Stephens stole second base and advanced to third when the catcher's throw went into center field, Keniry roped a double into right center to give Wake Forest a 2-1 lead.

The Terrapins tied the game with one run in the top of the fourth, but Wake Forest scored one in the bottom of the fourth and one in the bottom of the fifth to give the pitching staff all the support it would need. Rhine's home run went over the left field wall on an 0-2 count in the fourth, while Armour led off the fifth with a blast beyond the left field wall on a 1-1 pitch.

Holmes left in the seventh inning with one out and runners on second and third with the left-handed leadoff man Charlie White stepping to the plate. Deacon lefty John McLeod entered the game and struck White out looking and was replaced by Jack Fischer to face a string of right-handed hitters. Fischer got a ground ball to Rhine at third who tagged the base runner to end the inning.

Fischer then got two quick outs and allowed one hit on the first three pitches of the eighth inning. After giving up a single that put Terrapins on first and second, he ran the count full to Tomo Delp.

Michael Dimock then entered the game to finish the Delp at bat, and after a foul ball, he struck him out swinging to preserve the lead. Maryland was able to squeak out one run in the ninth, but Dimock was able to retire the final three batters of the game to earn his sixth save of the season and his second in as many games.

Wake Forest will now face a pair of midweek contests when Georgia Southern comes to town on Tuesday at 4 p.m. and NJIT comes to town on Wednesday at 4 p.m. Both games will take place at Gene Hooks Field at Wake Forest Baseball Park.

 

 

 

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