After the exam break and splitting nonconference games during the week, the North Carolina Tar Heels are back in action this weekend against a divisional opponent. With Carolina still tied with Georgia Tech for the Coastal Division lead, UNC must take advantage of their upcoming series against last place Pitt.
Here are the latest rankings for the Tar Heels:
- D1Baseball.com Top 25: 13
- NCBWA: 11
- Baseball America: 14
- USA Today Coaches Poll: 12
- RPI: 13
Below are Carolina’s latest results:
UNC Baseball Results
|3-6-20||vs. Notre Dame||L 5-8||10-5|
|3-7-20||vs. Notre Dame||L 8-11||10-6|
|3-8-20||vs. Notre Dame||L 8-14||10-7|
|3-10-20||vs. Gardner-Webb||W 13-6||11-7|
|3-11-20||vs. VMI||W 9-2||12-7|
Tuesday night, Winthrop started the scoring in the first. However, the Tar Heels responded in the latter half of the inning with a three-run bomb by Aaron Sabato to take the lead. In the next inning, Jackson Hesterlee added a two-run home run to extend the UNC lead to 5-1.
In the top of the fifth, the Eagles scored four to tie the game. Carolina responded with two outs in the bottom of the fifth with an Ashton McGee three-run home run to regain the lead. Winthrop came within one after two runs scored in the seventh, but the Tar Heels finally put enough on the board in the bottom half to go the distance. Hesterlee had a two-RBI double, Dylan Enwiller scored one on his sacrifice fly, and Sabato drove in one to extend the UNC lead to five.
Winthrop got two more in the eighth, but could not muster any more runs to complete the comeback. UNC scored one more and secured a 13-9 victory.
In the big time matchup between ranked opponents on Wednesday night, ECU came out in the first and basically put the game away. The Pirates scored six in the top of the first and their scoring barrage proved to be enough. Down seven in the second, Dylan Harris drove in a run to get Carolina on the board. ECU scored another in the third, then the Tar Heels got two back in the fifth, including a Sabato RBI, to bring UNC within five. Sabato hit a solo shot in the seventh and Freeman added a RBI single in the bottom of the ninth, but the Tar Heels fell short 9-5.
These are the individual leaders for UNC:
- Batting average: .311 - Danny Serretti
- Slugging percentage: .616 - Aaron Sabato
- Home runs: 12 - Michael Busch
- RBI: 47 - Michael Busch
- Hits: 52 - Michael Busch
- Runs: 59 - Michael Busch (1st in ACC)
- On-base percentage: .461 - Michael Busch (T-8th in ACC)
- ERA: 1.77 - Joey Lancellotti (minimum 10 innings pitched)
- Strikeouts: 69 - Tyler Baum (T-10th in ACC)
- Innings pitched: 61.2 - Tyler Baum
- Wins: 7 - Tyler Baum (7-2) (T-2nd in ACC)
- Saves: 5 - Austin Love (T-10th in ACC)
Needless to say, with just two ACC series remaining in the regular season, this is the weekend for the Tar Heels to make their move on Georgia Tech.
Carolina travels to Pittsburgh to face the lowly Panthers. Pitt is 18-30 overall and last in the ACC at 5-19. They have lost all eight ACC matchups this season and were swept in three of those.
However, UNC cannot look past Pitt. Although they lost the series, the Panthers opened their series last weekend at Florida State with a 10-0 victory.
Right fielder Nico Popa is leading the way for the Pitt offense. He ranks eighth in the ACC in both batting average (.349) and hits (65). Slugger Connor Perry is third in the league with 15 home runs and boasts a .619 slugging percentage.
Current ACC Standings
UNC Baseball Upcoming Schedule
|5/18/2023||6:00 PM||at Clemson|
|5/19/2023||6:00 PM||at Clemson|
|5/20/2023||1:00 PM||at Clemson|