April 27, 2013
Box Score (Game 1)
CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. – It didn’t take long for NC State’s hard-hitting softball team to leave the six-year-old school record for home runs in a season in the dust.
The Wolfpack (28-18-1 overall, 11-7 ACC) entered Saturday’s doubleheader against Boston College needing only two homers to match the record of 66 set by the 2007 team. It passed the record with three home runs in the first inning and added four more in the 10-3 victory, matching the school record of seven homers in a game it set on March 2 in a 20-0 home win over North Carolina A&T in the Wolfpack Challenge.
“I’m just glad we came up here and won the game,” said first-year head coach Shawn Rychcik. “Getting the season and game records are all well and good, but our goal this weekend was to win the first game and then look to win the second and third.
“Hitting home runs has become the identity of this team, so it’s not surprising that we hit a few more in this game. But getting the win was more important than getting the record.”
The Pack has now won 14 of its last 16 contests, heading into the second game of Saturday’s doubleheader.
In the top of the first, sophomore Renada Davis led off the game with a single, then the next two batters hit into fielder’s choice groundouts.
But freshman Hanna Sommer, junior Scout Albertson and senior Bethaney Wells came through with back-to-back-to-back home runs to race past the school record in a speedy sequence.
Sommer’s two-run shot scored Tate, Albertson’s solo shot tied the school record and Wells, who led the team in homers the last two seasons, broke the mark with the team’s third in a row.
That’s only the second time in school history that the Pack has hit three consecutive homers in a game. The other time was on Feb. 18, 2006, when Jen Chamberlain, Jennifer Patterson and Shaina Ervin hit a trio against Tennessee Tech.
Albertson added another solo homer in the third inning, giving her 10 home runs on the season, tying her with senior Caitlin Dent for second on the team behind Davis’ school-record 21.
Albertson, who has hit a pair of homers in a game three times this season, has now homered four times and driven in 12 of her 26 runs on the seasons in the Pack’s last five games.
Dent hit the Pack’s fifth homer of the game and her 11th of the season in the top of the sixth scoring Davis, and Sommer followed with her second of the game and ninth of the season.
She joined Davis, Dent and Albertson as the fourth Pack player this season to hit two home runs in a game.
The seven homers give the Pack an ACC-leading 71 for the year. In its previous two seasons, the Wolfpack had a combined 65 home runs, with 30 in 2011 and 35 in 2012.
The Pack has homered in 21 of its last 25 games, has multiple homers in 19 games this season and had at least four homers in a game six times this year.
Davis, who set the school single-season record for batting average and on-base percentage last year as a freshman, had three singles in the contest, extending her hitting streak to seven straight games. She finished 3-for-4 in the game with three singles and a walk. She’s gone 14-for-28 during her streak and raised her season average to .295, up more than 40 points from where she began at the start of the streak.
Boston College did answer with a homer of its own, a solo shot to centerfield by sophomore C.J. Chirichigno, ending Weiman’s 21 1/3-inning streak without giving up a run. Overall, with freshman Chelsea Stanfield’s one scoreless inning at Elon, the Pack had gone 22 1/3 innings without giving up a run in two games against Virginia and one against Elon.
BC senior Maria Pandolfo added a two-run homer right center in the bottom of the fourth, closing the gap to 5-3.
But Weiman (26-16) mowed down the Eagles the rest of the way, striking out the side in the top of the seventh to finish with a season-high 12 strikeouts. Her previous high of 11 came in the season-opening 5-1 win over Georgetown.
The teams played the second game of the doubleheader immediately afterwards.
Follow Wolfpack softball this season on Twitter (@PackSoftball), by liking the team’s official NC State Softball page and at www.GoPack.com/softball.