The North Carolina softball team (17-13, 3-4 ACC) defeated the N.C. State Wolfpack (20-11, 2-8 ACC) 12-11 in their first matchup of a three-game series at home Friday night.
The Wolfpack got off to a hot start and came out swinging in the first innings of the game. In the top of the second, N.C. State brought in three runs batted in. To bring the team’s total runs up to five in the third inning, first-year infielder Michele Tarpey homered to left center, allowing another run to come in after her.
Although the game started out slow for UNC, a double to center field by senior catcher Taylor Greene allowed the Tar Heels to advance to second and third base. Junior shortstop Destiny Middleton ran home to score the first run of the game in the bottom of the third inning.
To keep the momentum going, sophomore outfielder Kiannah Pierce doubled to center field to bring in two more runs for North Carolina. The next at-bat was sophomore outfielder Aneisha Brown, who doubled to center field and allowed Pierce to score.
The Wolfpack didn’t stop their scoring spree, however, and scored a total of two runs in the top of the fourth inning, making the score 7-4 in their favor.
Once North Carolina stepped up to the plate, the team displayed their fighting spirit and made it a tie game, with three Tar Heels bringing runs in.
Brown’s single to second base added another run to the board, but the score became 11-7 in UNC’s favor after Kianna Jones’s home run soared out of center field and ushered in three more runs for North Carolina to end the fourth inning.
To tie the game up once again, N.C. State scored another four runs in the fifth inning with no outs on their side yet, which prompted a pitching change from sophomore Tianna Hannappel to freshman Lilli Backes.