Baseball Scratches Past Valpo, 5-2
RALEIGH, N.C. Nick Stanley’s two-run single gave NC State a 5-0 lead, and Travis High fought his way through the ninth inning, stranding the potential tying run at first base as NC State defeated Valparaiso 5-2 Tuesday at Doak Field at Dail Park.
Through six innings, the sum total of the game’s offense was a run-scoring passed ball charged to Crusaders catcher Matt Lenski and a solo home run by the Wolfpack’s Devon Cartwright. A sensational two-out diving catch by Marcus Jones with runners on second and third kept Valpo from tying the game in the top of the seventh. The Wolfpack responded with three in the bottom half of the inning, all with two outs. Matt Payne singled to center field and took second on a wild pitch. Ryan Pond followed with a single through the left side of the infield to drive in Payne, and Jones followed with a single to left-center to put runners on the corners.
Valparaiso changed pitchers at that point. Matt Stucky came in to face Stanley, and Jones promptly stole second base. Stanley then gave the Pack a 5-0 lead with a soft fly ball to shallow left that fell in between three Crusaders defenders. Pond and Jones scored easily on the play.
Valpo got one run back in the top of the eighth. Zach Rodeghero led off with a double down the right-field line, went to third on a balk by reliever Jason Zinser, then scored on a wild pitch.
Valpo threatened again with two out in the top of the ninth. Pinch-hitter Jeff Greco singled up the middle, and Lenski and Rodeghero singled to load the bases. Andrew Quinnette walked to force in a run, but Travis High recovered by inducing Jason Brunelli to fly to center field to end the game.
NC State will return to action Wednesday at 3 p.m. against North Carolina A&T. The game will be broadcast on WKNC (88.1 FM) and will be available through Pack Pass on gopack.com.