March 11, 2012
RALEIGH, N.C. – Freshman Logan Jernigan utterly silenced No. 10 Georgia Tech, no-hitting the Jackets through six innings and tying a career-high with nine strikeouts, as NC State took the series-deciding game from Tech 8-3 Sunday at Doak Field at Dail Park.
Jernigan (3-0) fanned four of the first six batters he faced, cruising through the first two innings in order, but stumbled in the third with five walks to allow two runs. The freshman eventually regained his composure, striking out the last batter of the third to kick off a stretch in which he retired 10 of 12 batters before leaving after six.
The no-hit outing marks the second of the season for Jernigan, after he left through five no-hit innings against West Virginia. The Four Oaks, N.C. native has only allowed five hits over 18 innings for the year, two in his last 13 innings.
“I felt good about our performance today, and through the series,” said Jernigan. “I hit a bump in the road in the third, but overall I was pleased. I think the trouble I had that inning will be good in the long run, though. It’s a good experience to have behind me, because I learned a lot trying to fight and come back from that.”
Jernigan finished the day striking out nine of 18 batters, walking six, allowing two earned runs and no hits. D.J. Thomas (1) relieved him and took advantage of the save opportunity, giving up a single run on four hits over three innings.
The Wolfpack (11-3, 2-1 ACC) took command with a balanced offensive effort as seven different players recorded a hit on the afternoon, and all nine starters reached first at least once. Chris Diaz was one of three to go for two hits, finishing the day 2-for-4 with two RBIs and a run. Diaz’s hit streak balloons to 14 games after going 6-for-13 with six RBIs, three doubles, and three runs on the series.
Matt Bergquist went 2-for-3 with two doubles and an RBI. Danny Canela had a pair of singles in his 2-for-4 outing. Andrew Ciencin continued to show patience at the plate, reaching base in all five at-bats, going 1-for-3 with two runs and two walks. Ryan Mathews, Brett Austin, and Tarran Senay each hit RBI doubles in their only hits of the game, and Austin led the Pack with three runs scored.
Starter Dusty Isaacs (3-1) took the loss for Tech (11-5, 1-2 ACC) after giving up five runs, four earned, on three hits and six walks over the first three innings.
Turner and Austin led off the game with back-to-back walks, before a passed ball moved them to second and third. Ciencin drove a pitch directly to the third baseman, who bobbled the ball scrambling to tag Turner, loading the bases. A wild pitch sent Turner home, but Tech’s catcher made the flip to the pitcher covering home in time for the first out. Canela then walked to reload the bases. Diaz doubled into right, smashing one that bounced off the wall in front of the Wolfpack bullpen to score a pair.
Tech evened the score when Jernigan suffered some command issues in the third. Jernigan walked the first three batters, then balked, scoring the first. Two more walks pushed another run across to tie it 2-2.
State responded in the bottom half of the third, grabbing another two-run lead. Austin and Ciencin led off the inning with walks, and Canela followed with a single through the right side to load the bases. Isaacs induced a double play that allowed one run to cross. Mathews added the second on a two-out double to the wall in right center to make it 4-2.
Another two runs scored for the Pack in the fourth, one driven in by Austin’s two-out double, and the other on a Tech error. Fincher came aboard on a fielder’s choice and stole second. Austin lifted a pitch to left center that left fielder Brandon Thomas nearly snared on a slide, but the ball bounced free of his glove, landing for an RBI double. Austin advanced to third on the throw home. Ciencin grounded to third next, but the throw across skidded low, scoring Austin. Ciencin rounded second and headed for third on the error, but his hand came off the bag at third, allowing Tech to get out of the inning trailing 6-2.
The Wolfpack tacked on two more in the fifth to take an 8-2 lead as Senay knocked in Diaz with a two-out double off the wall in right center. Bergquist singled behind him, sending Senay around to score after colliding with the catcher just before the throw home arrived.
Georgia Tech mustered one run in the ninth, attempting to dig out of the six-run deficit. Sam Dove doubled and scored on pinch-hitter Alex Cruz’s single before the Yellow Jackets stranded runners at the corners to end the game.
NC State heads to Elon for a midweek game on Tuesday at 6 p.m. Radio coverage for the game will be provided by 88.1 WKNC, fans can follow Twitter updates from @NCStateBaseball, and live stats will be available at GoPack.com.