Riggins, Cartwright Lead Baseball Past Aggies, 16-3
RALEIGH, N.C. Harold Riggins went 4-for-5 with a home run, five RBIs and four runs scored Wednesday as NC State’s 5-6-7 hitters went a combined 9-for-11 with eight RBIs and 10 runs scored to rout visiting North Carolina A&T 16-3 at Doak Field at Dail Park.
With the win, the Wolfpack improves to 8-6, while the Aggies drop to 3-8. Kyle Rutter (2-1), the second of five NC State pitchers, held things down in the middle innings, giving up just one hit and one run in four innings to get the victory. He struck out five. Nick Oelker (0-3) got the loss, allowing seven hits and nine runs in five innings of work.
NC State fell behind early for the second straight game. George Hines walked to lead things off for the Aggies in the top of the first and promptly stole second off starter Jason Zinser. Hines came around to score when Xavier Macklin hit an RBI single up the middle and advanced to second on an error by center fielder Devon Cartwright. Macklin scored when Chris Mullins singled to left, giving the Aggies a 2-0 lead after a half-inning.
Rutter started the second inning for the Wolfpack. Lester Rivenbark greeted Rutter with a first-pitch leadoff home run to left field to extend the Aggies lead to 3-0. Rutter quickly restored order, getting three straight groundouts to end the second. At one point, Rutter set down 11 Aggie hitters in a row.
The Wolfpack bats came alive in the home half of the second inning. Kyle Wilson drew a one-out walk and advanced to second on a single by Cartwright. Riggins got the Wolfpack scoring started with a ground ball through the infield to bring home Wilson. With two runners on, Domonique Rodgers tied the game on a line-drive double to left-center to score Cartwright and Riggins.
Harold Riggins led off the fourth inning for the Wolfpack with a double and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Two batters later, pinch-hitter Wade Moore walked, and Dallas Poulk’s two-run single to left made it 5-3.
Pratt Maynard walked to lead off the NC State fifth. Wilson singled and Cartwright was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Riggins unloaded them with a three-run double to the right-field gap, extending the Wolfpack’s lead to 8-3. NC State added its ninth run when Oelker threw the ball into right field on Chris Schaeffer’s dribbler back to the mound.
Drew Poulk started a two-out rally in the sixth with a single to right, and Wilson was hit by a pitch. Cartwright drove in Poulk with a single up the middle, pushing the lead to 10-3.
The bottom of the NC State batting order joined the scoring parade in the bottom of the seventh. Domonique Rodgers reached base for the second time of the game on a leadoff walk and came around to score when Schaeffer doubled down the left-field line. After seven innings, the Wolfpack led 12-3.
NC State added four more runs in the bottom of the eighth. Wilson reached base for the fifth time in the game with a single, finishing the night 2-for-2 with two walks and three runs scored. Cartwright followed with a two-run homer to right-center field, and Riggins added to his big night at the plate with his first career home run, a long drive to right field. Rodgers was nicked by pitch, moved to third on a double error by Rivenbark at shortstop, and scored on a wild pitch.
The Wolfpack will face off with Maryland on Friday at Doak Field at Dail Park for a three-game weekend series, beginning at 3 p.m. All three games will be broadcast on WKNC-FM (88.1) and on-line at gopack.com through the Pack Pass package.