After getting off to a hot start to the season. North Carolina baseball has been in a bit of a funk lately. They picked up a much needed win over South Carolina during the week, but prior to that, they had lost six of their last seven games.
Over the weekend, they had a decent chance to get back on track against a Duke team that came into the series with a losing record. The weather ended up playing part, pushing the games a day back, meaning the series finale will take place later today. It will air at 6 PM ET on ACC Network Extra, if you’re interested. Before that happens, let’s take a look at what happened so far in the Diamond Heels’ weekend series.
Game One: UNC 2, Duke 4
The Heels were up against it from the start, as Duke scored a run in the first inning. They added another in the second, and then two more in the fifth to go up 4-0. As for UNC, They put on six runners through the first seven innings, with several of them getting into scoring position, but were unable to cash in on any of those chances.
They finally did break through in the eighth as Tomas Frick singled home Justice Thompson. They then threatened in the ninth, with Mikey Madej scoring on an error. The tying run would come to plate, but it end would end with another missed chance to rue.
After the fifth, the pitching side of things went well. Connor Ollio threw the final 4.2 innings, allowing one run while striking out six. Thompson probably had the best day of the plate. He reached base twice, one hit and one walk, while scoring one of the aforementioned runs.
Game Two: UNC 11, Duke 5
The offense may have been an issue in the series opener, but it wasn’t in game two.
Duke got off to a similar start as they did on Saturday, taking a 2-0 lead in the second. This time, Carolina fought back, scoring two runs in the third. The Blue Devils then opened up a 5-2 lead, but again the Heels reeled them back in, tying the game in the fifth. It stayed tied until a decisive eighth inning.
In the eighth, UNC fully broke the game open, scoring six runs. Carolina batted around, recording five hits, with a hit by pitch and an error mixed in there as well. Caleb Roberts broke the tie with an RBI single before Danny Serretti followed that with a two-run home run. After that, the Heels were off the races, eventually finishing off a six-run win.
Serretti had the most impressive performance of the day, picking up two hits and a walk in addition to his home run. Roberts, Dallas Tessar, Brett Centracchio, Colby Wilkerson, and Will Schroeder all had two hit day as UNC put up 14 in total in the game.
Gage Gillian allowed two runs in his first inning, but did a nice job settling down after that. He retired eight straight batters at one point, allowing UNC to rally and eventually get the win.
After the series finale today, the Heels have a midweek game against Charlotte and a weekend series against Pitt. Both teams are solid, so some wins would go a long way to helping steady the ship.