clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

ACC Tournament: #7 UNC vs #2 Florida State

New, comment

ACC Tournament: #7 UNC vs #2 FSU, 7:00 PM, RSN/ESPN3

Having survived the play-in game versus NC State, UNC moves into pool play which three chances to pad the NCAA resume with some good wins. The first such opportunity comes Wednesday evening with the Heels facing FSU. UNC lost the regular season series to the Seminoles less than two weeks ago dropping the first two games 7-0 and 10-2 before winning the finale 5-4.

Mike Fox will send sophomore Taylore Cherry to the mound for UNC. Cherry pitched in the ACC Championship game a year ago, giving UNC five solid innings of work as the Tar Heels knocked off Virginia Tech for UNC's first ACC Tournament title since 2007. In that respect Cherry is no stranger to the postseason stage. He comes in with a 2-2 record in six starts and 11 overall appearances. Cherry has a 3.13 ERA in 37.1 innings pitched with 34 hits, 19 walks and 23 strikeouts. Opposing teams are batting .234 against Cherry who has mainly seen work against the Tar Heels' midweek opponents.

With Reilly Hovis throwing over 70 pitches on Tuesday it is unlikely he will be available again until Friday or Saturday. The same is probably true of Trent Thornton, who may not even start in the ACC Tournament but could come out of the bullpen for UNC's later pool play games. In all likelihood Trevor Kelley, Spencer Trayner and Zach Rice will be available to follow Cherry who will probably not have an outing longer than 5-6 innings.

When UNC is at the plate, it will be interesting to see if Skye Bolt continues to hit well. Bolt has endured a precipitous drop-off in his batting average from his freshman year. Bolt finished the regular season batting .246, 75 points lower than his rookie campaign. Bolt opened up ACC Tournament play with a home run in his first at-bat and added a sac fly RBI later in the 4-3 win over NC State. If Bolt can heat up to go along with Michael Russell, Landon Lassiter and senior Parks Jordan, the Heels might be able to muster a little more offense at just the right time.

UNC is presently on the NCAA Tournament bubble. Warren Nolan has the Heels at 40th in the projected RPI. A win versus RPI top five FSU or Virginia would certainly seal a bid. UNC also faced Maryland which is currently being projected in the top 30 of the RPI. In short, there are very helpful wins to be had in the next three days if the Heels can put together a string of solid outings.