Wake Forest Downs NC State 4-3 for First ACC Win
March 21, 2010
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Wake Forest earned its first Atlantic Coast Conference win of the 2010 season, defeating NC State 4-3 in 10 innings on Sunday afternoon at Gene Hooks Field at Wake Forest Baseball Park.
The Demon Deacons improve to 7-14 and 1-5 in ACC play with the victory, while the Wolfpack fall to 14-6 and 2-4 in conference play.
With the game tied at three in the bottom of the 10th inning, the Deacs plated a run to claim the extra inning win. Carlos Lopez reached on a walk to lead off the inning. Matt Conway moved pinch runner John Stamper to second on a sacrifice bunt. Shane Kroker hit a single up the middle and Stamper was held at third to put runners on at the corners. Mike Lubanski hit a ground ball to short that appeared to be a double play ball. Shortstop Matt Bergquist flipped to second for the second out of the inning, but second baseman Chris Diaz's throw to first was wild, allowing Stamper to score the game-winning run from third base.
Ryan McGrath (1-1) earned the win in relief for the Deacs. McGrath struck out the only batter he faced in the ball game. Russell Wilson (0-1) received the loss, giving up a run on a hit in 0.2 of an inning.
Wake Forest starter Austin Stadler was outstanding on the mound. Stadler tossed a career-high 8.2 innings, giving up three runs on five hits, with six strikeouts and three walks. The sophomore gave up all three of his runs in the fourth inning, but shut down the NC State offense, the league leader in runs scored and batting average entering the weekend, for the rest of the game.
NC State starter Alex Sogard was also effective, giving up two runs on four hits in 5.1 innings with one strikeout. Out of the Wolfpack bullpen, Ray Cotilla, Nick Rice, Grant Sasser and Anthony Tzamtzis each turned in scoreless outings.
Offensively, Conway and Kroker led Wake Forest with two hits each. Conway added an RBI in the game. Steven Brooks and Lubanski also had an RBI in the victory.
Drew Poulk led NC State with three hits in four at bats and an RBI. Andrew Ciencin added an RBI and scored a run.
The Demon Deacons grabbed an early lead with a run in the bottom of the second. Mike Murray led off the inning with a double down the right field line. After Lopez grounded out to short for the first out of the inning, Conway drove home Murray with a double to the right center field gap to put Wake in front 1-0.
NC State dented the scoreboard for the first time in the top of the fourth. Kyle Wilson reached on an infield single to start the inning and moved to second on a walk to Dallas Poulk. Ciencin singled through the left side, scoring Wilson from second. The ball got under Ryan Semeniuk's glove in left field, allowing Poulk to advance to third on the play. Drew Poulk lined a single to center field, scoring his brother, Dallas, and moving Ciencin to third. Danny Canela grounded into a 6-3 double play to score Ciencin and make the score 3-1. Stadler struck out Chris Schaeffer to end the inning.
Wake Forest got a run back in the bottom of the fifth inning. After the first two batters in the inning were retired, Pat Blair drew a walk and moved to second on a single to left field by Semeniuk. Steven Brooks doubled down the left field line to score Blair. Semeniuk tried to score from first on the play, but he was gunned down at the plate on a perfectly executed relay from the left fielder to the shortstop to the catcher.
The Deacs tied the game with a run in the home half of the seventh. Mark Rhine walked with one out and advanced to second on a single to left field by Blair. After Semeniuk struck out swinging for the second out of the inning, each runner moved up a base on a double steal. Brooks then hit a ground ball to short, but the shortstop's throw to first took the first baseman off the bag, allowing Brooks to reach and scoring Rhine from third base to tie the game. The Wolfpack was able to avoid further damage as Murray struck out swinging to end the inning.
NC State threatened to take the lead in the top of the ninth. After the first two batters of the inning were retired, Drew Poulk singled up the middle and moved up to second on a walk to Canela. Schaeffer was hit by a pitch to load the bases with two down. Ernst struck out Russell Wilson looking on a 2-2 pitch to end the threat.
In the bottom of the ninth, Wake Forest was able to advance the potential game-winning run to third, but couldn't score him. With one out in the inning, Blair was hit by a pitch and moved to second on a throwing error by the pitcher on a failed pickoff attempt. A ground out to first by Semeniuk advanced Blair to third. Brooks was intentionally walked to put runners on the corners with two outs. Murray grounded out to the pitcher to end the threat and send the game to extra innings.
Wake Forest returns to action on Wednesday, traveling to High Point. First pitch against the Panthers is set for 6 p.m. (ET).
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