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Baseball Report Week 11: Hokies Pick Up Massive Win at UNC, but Continue to Struggle

BB W11 Cover

Hokies Rough Start to Solid Finish in Chapel Hill

The Hokies traveled to Chapel Hill, NC this past weekend to face the No. 15 Carolina Tarheels. Although the Tarheels took the series victory, it wasn't without a well-deserved win on Sunday.

The series loss knocks the Hokies from the #2 to the #3 seed line in most NCAA Regional projections. A rise back to the #2 is certainly possible, but at current rate the Hokies are far from comfortable. Much of their postseason success will ride on the next few weeks of play as Miami visits Blacksburg followed by another showdown vs an Omaha hopeful in Virginia. 

BB W11 Projections NCAA Regional Projections as of May 3rd

Series Loss @ UNC (1-2)


The Hokies began the weekend on a rough start struggling to get hits, and ultimately losing the game 8-1. Carson DeMartini hit a record bomber in the 9th inning scoring the only run. UNC's Jason Decaro was credited with Friday's win after having 8 strikeouts with 4 hits allowed over 7 innings pitched.


After a bitter Friday night defeat, the Hokies seemed to return to Boshamer Stadium seeking revenge on Saturday. Despite what seemed a pitching struggle on both sides, the Hokies still came up short after the Tarheels recorded 10 hits and 6 runs compared to the Hokies' 6 hits and 3 runs. Tarheels' pitcher Shea Sprague was given the win for the game with 6 strikeouts and 4 hits allowed over 6.2 innings pitched, but Dalton Pence had the save with the last strikeout and no hits allowed over 0.2 innings pitched.


It wasn't until the boys arrived on Sunday that things started to turn in the right direction. Despite a rocky pitching start for the Hokies, the bats were rolling with a homer to right field from Left fielder Ben Watson in the first inning. Watson's single-run bomber was followed by another home run to right field from Shortstop Clay Grady leading Eddie Micheletti home in the 4th giving Virginia Tech the lead 3-2. 

After Center fielder Chris Cannizzaro hit an RBI to center field to lead Watson home, the Tarheels scored once more in the 8th trailing the Hokies 4-3. Jordan Little had the save after 2 strikeouts with 1 hit allowed over 1.2 innings pitched, and secured Sunday's strong finish for the Hokies' series against the Carolina Tarheels in Chapel Hill.

Midweek Win vs North Carolina A&T


Freshman Madden Clement threw just over five innings in his best start of the year, striking out 7-18 batters faced. On the way to his second victory, Clement allowed only three runners to reach the bases, two on singles and one from a fielder's choice. 

Preston Crowl, Jacob Stretch, and Andrew Sentlinger followed up Clement's outing with solid innings of their own, adding another three Ks. The four Hokies gave up 0 walks combined, showing clear signs of improvement after struggling the past month.

The Hokies' bats were active at the plate with 10 hits for 11 runs, led by Ben Watson, Eddie Micheletti, and Clay Grady who all had two hits. Five of Tech's runs came in the 3rd inning, coming from two doubles, a single, and two errors in the field. Nick Locurto capped off the game with a two-run homer, a career first, extending the lead to 11-0 before Sentlinger retired the side for the win. 

The Week Ahead

The Hokies have a breather with a non-conference home series vs Ohio. The Bobcats are 14-25 on the season. Although the series may not help the RPI for the Hokies, continuing to stack some wins will make their overall record too good for the selection committee to ignore. Remember, avoiding bad losses can sometimes be just as good as a few good wins. 

In the midweek, the Hokies welcome in-state rival James Madison to Blacksburg. Revenge will be the name of the game, as the Hokies lost on a walk off at the beginning of the season in Harrisonburg. Again, it won't provide the Hokies with an opportunity for a marquee win, but JMU is having a very good season. The Dukes, who were egregiously picked 10th in the Sun Belt to start the seasons, are 26-18 and 11-10 in conference. A nice 5-0 stretch (including the NC A&T win) would do a lot to bump the Hokies onto the border between a 2 and 3 seed in the NCAA Regionals. 

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I will graduate from Winthrop University with my undergraduate degree in May of 2024 where I was also a member of their DI Women’s Volleyball Team. I have worked for several big name media outlets such as ESPN Radio and sports leagues such as the Carolina Panthers in the NFL. 

I have the experience and capability of producing and directing ESPN productions as well as sideline reporting.

I joined the Sons of Saturday team in August of 2023 as a content creator and now work in social media content development for all sports.

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