After back-to-back one-run losses to East Carolina, the North Carolina Tar Heels bounced back on Tuesday and Wednesday with wins over VCU.
Carolina is now riding a two-game winning streak as they host Stony Brook (0-6).
UNC Baseball Upcoming Schedule
|3/31/2023||6:00 PM||at Notre Dame|
|4/1/2023||3:00 PM||at Notre Dame|
|4/2/2023||1:00 PM||at Notre Dame|
The good news about the weekend loss to East Carolina is that the ranked Pirates did not boot UNC from the national rankings. The Tar Heels took a hit in the polls, but are still ranked this week.
Here are the current rankings for UNC:
- D1Baseball.com: 13
- Baseball America: 22
- NCBWA: 19
- Collegiate Baseball: 21
- USA Today Coaches Poll: 21
By the end of the third inning on Tuesday, Carolina had enough runs to go the distance.
Tomas Frick started the scoring in the second with a solo shot:
Starting off the bottom of the 2nd with a bang!— Carolina Baseball (@DiamondHeels) February 28, 2023
Alberto Osuna registered his first hit of the season with a homer to go back-to-back with Frick:
First hit of the season for Alberto Osuna, and it's a #BertoBlast— Carolina Baseball (@DiamondHeels) February 28, 2023
In the bottom of the third with two on, Frick stayed hot with another home run:
Another inning, another homer for Tomas Frick pic.twitter.com/HnXcA84xQe— Carolina Baseball (@DiamondHeels) February 28, 2023
VCU tallied two in the fourth, but in the bottom half of the inning, Vance Honeycutt crushed a solo homer:
Absolutely NO doubt about that one!!!— Carolina Baseball (@DiamondHeels) February 28, 2023
After the Rams scored two in the fifth, Carolina put the game away with a Mac Horvath three-run home run:
Mac attacked that ball for his team-leading 5th HR of the season!— Carolina Baseball (@DiamondHeels) February 28, 2023
After Jake Knapp went 4.1 innings, the bullpen finally had a good outing. Four UNC pitchers kept VCU scoreless over the final 4.2 innings to complete the 10-4 win.
In the Wednesday finale, VCU started the scoring in the first to take the early lead.
After a scoreless first, UNC grabbed the lead in the second off a two-run double from Colby Wilkerson:
First lead of the day thanks to Clutch Colby— Carolina Baseball (@DiamondHeels) March 1, 2023
The Rams responded in kind in the third with a three-run home run to retake the lead.
In the bottom half of the inning, the Tar Heels would take the lead for good. The scoring started with a RBI single from Osuna.
Then Jackson Van De Brake smashed a three-run home run:
Keeping the inning alive with more runs— Carolina Baseball (@DiamondHeels) March 1, 2023
The teams traded runs in the fourth, and VCU got two more in the sixth to bring the game within one.
In the bottom half of the sixth, Honeycutt hit a homer:
Honey, he's home !!!— Carolina Baseball (@DiamondHeels) March 1, 2023
That's 3 straight games with a home run for Vance Honeycutt!
Carolina exploded with four runs in the eighth to stretch their margin to six.
The inning was capped off with another home run from Van De Brake, his second of the game:
Van De BREAKING this game wide open in the bottom of the 8th!— Carolina Baseball (@DiamondHeels) March 2, 2023
VCU’s rally in the ninth fell short, and UNC swept the two-game series with a 14-10 win.
Carolina pitched by committee on Wednesday with eight Tar Heels toeing the rubber. Ben Peterson had the best outing with 1.1 inning pitched, no runs allowed, and one strikeout.
Stony Brook (0-6) has struggled out of the gate, but did have some improvements in their last two games last weekend against Troy.
Evan Giordano leads the Seawolves with a .360 batting average, six RBIs, and nine hits.
Graduate students Nick DeGennaro and Jared Bellissimo will likely be two of the three starters this weekend for Stony Brook.
Below are the individual leaders for UNC:
Batting (minimum 2 PA/G and 75% of games played):
- Batting average: .412 - Patrick Alvarez
- Slugging percentage: 1.029 - Mac Horvath
- Home runs: 5 - Mac Horvath
- RBI: 13 - Tomas Frick
- Hits: 14 - Mac Horvath
- Runs: 13 - Mac Horvath
- On-base percentage: .533 - Mac Horvath
- Stolen bases: 6 - Vance Honeycutt
Pitching (minimum 1 IP/G):
- ERA: 1.93 - Connor Bovair
- Strikeouts: 14 - Max Carlson
- Innings pitched: 11.1 - Max Carlson
- Wins: 1 - Jake Knapp
- Saves: n/a
- Opposing Batting Average: .135 - Max Carlson