After suffering a post-season-ending 14-7 loss against Auburn during last season's NCAA Chapel Hill Super Regional that decided a spot in the College World Series, a young North Carolina baseball team is ready to compete once again in 2020.
With a No. 18 preseason ranking from Baseball America, UNC will be returning its two leading hitters — Aaron Sabato and Danny Serretti — and a deep pitching staff with an added sense of motivation after coming one bad inning away from a possible trip to Omaha last June.
“Those veteran players that were in that game, I’m sure that’s in the back of their mind,” head coach Mike Fox said. “If you get that close, you don’t forget.”
The motivation to get back to the top ranks of collegiate baseball was echoed by UNC’s returning players, who admitted to having an added push after last year’s results.
“My 2018 team that went to the College World Series, they had the Davidson loss the year before in the regionals,” junior pitcher Joey Lancellotti said. “They were heartbroken, they were No. 2 in the country and didn’t make a super regional. I think playing with the 2018 guys kind of helped me going into this year.”