Wolfpack to face Duke for crown
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (theACC.com) – NC State and Duke missed their scheduled chance to meet during the regular season, but they will do so on Sunday with an ACC Baseball Championship title on the line.
A strong outing by Wolfpack starting pitcher Sam Highfill and timely hitting from J.T. Jarrett, Luca Tresh and Tyler McDonough spelled the difference as third-seeded NC State defeated No. 2 seed Georgia Tech 8-1 in the second tournament semifinal game Saturday at Truist Field.
NC State (30-16) and ninth-seeded Duke (31-10) will meet in Sunday’s noon championship game (ESPN2). The winner earns the ACC’s automatic berth in the NCAA tournament.
Duke’s last ACC title came in 1961, and the Wolfpack seeks to hoist the trophy for the first time since 1992. NC State last reached the tournament final in 2015, when it dropped a 6-2 decision to Florida State in Durham.
Duke downs Virginia
CHARLOTTE (theACC.com) – Duke’s torrid late-season run continues, and it has landed the Blue Devils in the ACC Baseball Championship title game for the first time.
Joey Loperfido homered twice and drove in three runs, and starting pitcher Luke Fox delivered seven strong innings as the ninth-seeded Blue Devils topped eight-seeded Virginia 4-2 in Saturday afternoon’s semifinal action at Truist Park.
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Duke (31-10) will carry an 11-game winning streak into Sunday’s noon championship game versus the winner of Saturday’s second semifinal between No. 2 seed Georgia Tech (29-22) and No.3 seed NC State (29-16).
While the Blue Devils will be making their first appearance in the ACC Baseball Championship finals since the conference began deciding its champion via tournament play in 1973, Duke has won the league title three times via regular-season play -- back-to-back in 1956 and 1957, then again in 1961. Head coach Chris Pollard and his squad will seek to end the drought.
FRIDAY'S LATE GAME
Tar Heels get past Wolfpack
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (theACC.com) – Mac Horvath hit a first-inning grand slam and finished with six RBI, powering sixth-seeded North Carolina to a 9-6 win over third-seeded NC State in the final game of the 2021 Baseball Tournament’s pool play session Friday night.
NC State entered the game having already clinched a spot in Saturday’s semifinal against No. 2 seed Georgia Tech (5 p.m., ACC Network). The winner will advance to Sunday’s noon championship game against the winner of Saturday’s first semifinal between No. 8 Virginia and No. 9 Duke.
North Carolina (27-25) ended tournament play with Friday night’s win, but the Tar Heels hope they haven’t ended their season. UNC will anxiously await Monday’s NCAA Tournament selections in hope its overall resume nets a spot in the 64-team field.