Balanced Effort Leads No. 17 Deacs Past Elon, 14-1
April 4, 2017

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Wake Forest Athletic Communications (@WakeBaseball)

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- No. 17-ranked Wake Forest took advantage of two big innings offensively and a dominant pitching effort in a 14-1 victory over Elon at David F. Couch Ballpark on Tuesday night.

Demon Deacon (22-8) pitchers combined to strike out 18 Phoenix (15-14), the most by Wake Forest since 1985.

Nick DiPonzio became the first Deacon since Mac Williamson in 2012 to hit two home runs in an inning, as he blasted a solo shot and grand slam in Wake Forest's eight-run eighth.

Johnny Aiello hit the other Deacon longball, as his third-inning three-run blast broke a 1-1 tie and put Wake Forest in front for good.

Drew Loepprich (2-2) started for the Deacs and struck out seven in 5.0 innings.

Three Wake Forest relievers combined for 4.0 hitless innings after that. Morgan McSweeney fanned five hitters in 2.0 innings, then Carter Bach and Rayne Supple each struck out the side to close out the game.

Ty Adcock put Elon in front with a solo homer in the second inning, but the Demon Deacons scored the next 14 runs of the game.

Gavin Sheets had an RBI groundout, followed by Aiello's three-run dinger and a two-run Jonathan Pryor single to put the Deacs up 6-1 in the third.

DiPonzio led off the seventh with a pinch-hit solo blast on a 1-2 pitch, the first homer of his career. Then, Stuart Fairchild had an RBI single, Christian Long tallied a sacrifice fly and Aiello roped an RBI double, setting up for DiPonzio to hit a grand slam to cap off the inning.

Seven Deacons recorded multi-hit efforts, led by Jake Mueller (3-for-4). Pryor, Fairchild, Sheets, Aiello, DiPonzio and Logan Harvey added two apiece.

• With three more homers Tuesday, Wake Forest brings its season total to 55, second in the nation behind only Virginia Tech.
• Wake Forest has hit 24 of those in 14 games away from Winston-Salem, in addition to 31 in 16 home games.

• With 18 strikeouts on Tuesday, the Deacs have now fanned 279 batters in 271.0 innings, good for 9.27 per nine innings.
• Wake Forest hasn't finished a year with more than 8.0 strikeouts per nine innings since tallying a 9.34 mark in 1958.

• Wake Forest makes the return trip to Elon tomorrow at 6 p.m.
• Then, the Deacs head to Kentucky this weekend for a three-game series at No. 2 Louisville.