The No. 27 North Carolina baseball team split the first two games of its weekend series against No. 6 Florida State on Friday evening in Boshamer Stadium.
The Tar Heels (14-9) captured game one of the Friday’s doubleheader, dominating the Seminoles, 16-8.
Tyler Baum was the starting pitcher for UNC. He started out strong, mowing through the Seminoles (19-5) in the first two innings, allowing no hits while striking out two.
North Carolina’s first five batters reached base in the first inning, as the Tar Heels jumped out to a 5-0 lead. Junior Cody Roberts walked, sophomore Michael Busch doubled and back-to-back RBI-singles by Kyle Datres and Zack Gahagan gave UNC a two-run lead. North Carolina tacked on three more runs in the inning, batting around the order.
FSU responded in the third inning. With two runners on, Jackson Lueck launched a line drive to left field that cleared the wall for a three-run home run.
Later in the third, Florida State third baseman Drew Mendoza hit a short flyball to center field with two outs. Center fielder Brandon Riley charged toward the ball and dove head first, but the ball landed right in front of his glove to keep the inning alive. The Seminoles capitalized on the opportunity with a two-run double from Steven Wells to tie the game at five.
The Tar Heels regained the lead in the bottom of the inning when Kyle Datres drew a walk with the bases loaded to score Brandon Martorano.
When FSU tied the game with a sac fly, Michael Busch put UNC back in front in the bottom of the inning with a two-run home run that hit off the scoreboard in left field. After the fifth inning, North Carolina held an 8-6 lead.
The Seminoles scored one run in the top of the seventh. Then, the Tar Heels responded with seven runs in the bottom of the inning, highlighted by Michael Busch’s second two-run home run of the day and a pinch-hit two-run homer by Dylan Enwiller.
UNC added one more run in eighth inning on an RBI-single by Busch. FSU scored one run in top of the ninth, but the Tar Heels held on to win 16-8.
Michael Busch led the way for North Carolina. He had four hits, including two home runs and five RBIs in the Tar Heel victory.
Florida State avenged its game one defeat with a 6-3 extra-inning victory — after battling back from a two-run deficit.
Austin Bergner started on the mound in the second game for UNC, and he dominated. The Florida native pitched 6.1 strong innings, struck out 10 and only allowed six hits before exiting the game.
Unlike the first game, runs were hard to come by in game two. Neither team could put up a run until the bottom of the fifth inning, when Dallas Tessar launched a solo home run to left field, his first as a Tar Heel.
Later in the inning, with two outs, Datres hit a ball up the middle that would have been a routine play for the FSU second baseman, but the ball bounced off the second base bag and changed directions into the outfield bringing home Cody Roberts for a 2-0 North Carolina lead.
After allowing two singles in the seventh inning, reliever Josh Hiatt replaced Bergner on the mound with runners on first and third. The Seminoles then scored their first run of the game on a sac fly to center field, ending Bergner’s shutout. FSU added two more runs in the inning with consecutive RBI singles to, taking a 3-2 lead.
The Tar Heels were down 3-2 and one strike away from losing in the bottom of the ninth when Michael Busch hit a single to keep the game alive after being down 0-2 in the count. Datres followed Busch with a double to left field, bringing Busch home from first base, just ahead of the tag by the Seminoles Catcher to force extra innings.
Florida State loaded the bases with no outs in the top of the 10th when a throwing error by Joey Lancellotti allowed J.C. Flowers to reach base. In the next at bat, shortstop Mike Salvatore hit a two-run single down the right field line. The Seminoles tacked on one more run in the inning to take a three run lead.
UNC failed to put together another late rally, losing 6-3. The loss snapped North Carolina’s five game win streak and evened the series against FSU at one apiece.
The Tar Heels will next take action in the rubber match against the Seminoles on Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. in Boshamer Stadium.
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