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Virginia Tech Hokie Baseball Has a 3-1 Weekend with a Series Win over #18 UNC

This might have been a tough road trip with a rescue Tuesday game. It ended up being something special for the Hokies; a road series win in Chapel Hill and then a solid home game against Marshall. Every baseball fan will take that every weekend. GO HOKIES!!!

A long time ago in a not to far away ball park
John Schneider - SB Nation

So, this past weekend, the Hokies took a short road trip to Chapel Hill after a weather abbreviated but successful (2-0) road trip between Indiana and Lexington. Our birds managed to head back down I-81 from VMI with a convincing double-digit win, and that might have been something that helped to reignite some impulse to be special. There wasn’t really anything in the teams’ history to suggest that Tech had much of a hope of grabbing more than one game on the home turf of the Tar Heels. They’ve been a difficult nut to crack in their home territory for recent, if not long-term history. We won the series at home last season, but the Hokies have just never made much in the way of traction in Chapel Hill. This series is more than 100 years old, with the first game being played in 1907.

These Hokies are not those Hokies. They wanted this one and brought every tool in the box to North Carolina to get their first ever series win, there.

(Note: this is a bit abbreviated, I spent a ton of time on the football article, so I had to shorten this one a bit.)

Virginia Tech Hokies vs. North Carolina Tar Heels - Game 1 - Friday April 1st

Hokies vs, Tar Heels - Game 1

Team/Inning 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Team/Inning 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
>>Virginia Tech 3 0 0 3 1 1 0 4 0 12 14 0
North Carolina 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 9 0
It was a long ball and pitching gem Hokie Sports

There were two highlights in this game, and this is one of the more convincing ways to dominate a game. Tech pitching combined for a near shutout, and the Tech hammers were out in force. This game might have stunned the Heels a bit.

Hokie Pitching for Game 1

Player Innings Hits Runs Earned Walks Kos Wild Stuff Plonks
Player Innings Hits Runs Earned Walks Kos Wild Stuff Plonks
Griffin Green (W, 2-2) 5 5 0 0 1 3 0 0
Graham Firoved 3 3 1 1 1 3 0 0
Brady Kirtner 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0
Jordan Geber 1 1 0 0 0 2 0 0
TOTALS 9 1 1 3 8 0 0
Griffen Green gets a win Hokie Sports

Griffin Green needed a confidence booster, and this game should have helped him. He pitched a good start with no runs notched and five hits from a high-powered offense.

The high power was reserved for the Hammerin’ Hokies in this one. Here are some of the offensive notes to give you an idea of how the ball was jumping off the bats for our birds.

Offensive Highlights for Game 1 (Hokie Sports)

At the Plate

Doubles: Jack Hurley (1); Eduardo Malinowski (2)

Home Runs: Gavin Cross (2); Tanner Schobel (2); Eduardo Malinowski (1); Carson DeMartini (1)

On the Bags

Stolen Bases: Cade Hunter (1)

A 12 - 1 win in their house was a real treat, and the next treat came the next day.

Virginia Tech Hokies vs. North Carolina Tar Heels - Game 2 - Saturday April 2nd

So, sometimes you win with the long ball and your pitching being really good is a bonus. Sometimes you get a bunch of something going and win games by steadily building momentum and scoring runs while your pitching and their issues keep them from crossing the plate enough times.

Hokies vs. Tar Heels - Game 2

Team/Inning 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Team/Inning 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
>>Virginia Tech 0 0 3 0 1 1 0 2 0 7 6 4
North Carolina 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 1 3 7 0
Hokies kept scoring, Heels didn’t Hokie Sports

For this game we are going to push the grid derived from Hokie Sports scoring summary. Instead of long ball, the Hokies managed to manufacture runs in ones, and small bunches throughout the game.

Hokies vs. Tar Heels - Game 2 - Scoring Summary

Team Inning Play Description VT UNC
Team Inning Play Description VT UNC
VT 3rd G. Cross walked - RBI (3-2 KBSFFBBB) - N. Biddison advanced to second - C. DeMartini advanced to third - S. Tackett scored. 1 0
VT 3rd T. Schobel singled to center field - RBI (2-2 KBFBFF) - G. Cross advanced to second - N. Biddison advanced to third - C. DeMartini scored. 2 0
VT 3rd C. Hunter walked - RBI (3-0 BBBB) - T. Schobel advanced to second - G. Cross advanced to third - N. Biddison scored. 3 0
UNC 4th Frick reached on a fielder's choice - RBI (0-0) - Castagnozzi out at second p to 2b - Serretti advanced to third - Zarate scored - unearned. 3 1
VT 5th J. Hurley doubled down the rf line - RBI (2-2 KBBF) - G. Cross scored. 4 1
VT 6th J. Hurley walked - RBI (3-2 BSBFBB) - T. Schobel advanced to second - G. Cross advanced to third - S. Tackett scored. 5 1
UNC 6th Frick grounded out to 2b - RBI (1-1 BK) - Castagnozzi advanced to third - Serretti scored - unearned. 5 2
VT 8th T. Schobel singled to right field - RBI (2-2 BKFFFB) - G. Cross advanced to second - N. Biddison advanced to third - C. DeMartini scored. 6 2
VT 8th E. Malinowsk reached on a fielder's choice - RBI (1-0 B) - T. Schobel out at second ss to 2b - G. Cross advanced to third - N. Biddison scored. 7 2
UNC 9th Serretti flied out to rf - SF - RBI (0-1 K) - Zarate advanced to third - Madej scored. 7 3
Final 7 3
Sometimes you manufacture runs Hokie Sports

The story and star of this game, however is Freshman pitching phenom Drue Hackenberg. He pitched an absolute 6 inning gem, with a big quality start label, and 0 earned runs hung up for the ‘Heels. (2 unearned did cross the plate). There was a definite defensive issue going on with the position players, though.

Hokie Game 2 Pitching Stats

Player Innings Knocks Plates Earned Plates Walks Fans Wild Stuff Plonks
Player Innings Knocks Plates Earned Plates Walks Fans Wild Stuff Plonks
Drue Hackenberg (W, 5-0) 6 4 2 0 1 4 1 1
Henry Weycker 1 1 0 0 1 0 0 0
Jonah Hurney 2 2 1 1 2 2 1 0
TOTALS 7 3 1 4 6 2 1
A real quality start and solid relief Hokie Sports

Normally we don’t point a bloody finger but as good as Tech’s offense was, it’s defense had some serious issues in the field. Errors were doled out to Nick Biddison, Tanner Schobel, Nick Holesa, and Carson DeMartini. That is very unusual for them and the Hokies are very lucky that the fielding mistakes didn’t cost them the game. Few teams win games by putting up four errors. I am sure that Coach Szefc’s staff had something to say about that after the game.

Virginia Tech Hokies vs. North Carolina Tar Heels - Game 3 - Sunday April 3rd

Well, the expectations of a sweep in someone else’s house were probably a bit much to have, even after the series win on Saturday. The Hokies struggled on the mound, and the bats seem to have gotten on the bus to head for Blacksburg before the game finished.

Hokies vs. Tar Heels - Game 3

Team/Inning 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Team/Inning 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Virginia Tech 0 3 1 0 1 0 0 1 0 6 13
>>North Carolina 0 2 4 0 1 3 0 0 X 10 11
Oops dropped this one after starting off well. Hokie Sports

There was some hope that the brooms could be pulled out as the Hokies had a decent enough pitching start and jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the 2nd. Then the pitching melted down, and the Tar Heels caught and passed Tech by the end of the 4th inning. Tech would keep trying to get some offensive traction, but the Carolina 3-run 6th pretty much salted the game away.

Yes, Tech dropped the third and final game to the Tar Heels, but still savored a series win against a very tough opponent that we have rarely beaten with any regularity. That’s two series in a row that Tech has taken. There seems to be a major attitude change in this organization and Hokie baseball fans are excited about it.

Virginia Tech Hokies vs. Marshall Thundering Herd - Tuesday April 5th

So, the Hokies got to come home for a spot game on Tuesday with the Marshall Thundering Herd. We’ll be visiting Huntington on May 4th so it’s good to grab the home side of a small home and away series. Tech’s pitch by committee group did its job well, and the bats came back to life for this one.

Hokies vs. Marshall for Tuesday

Team/Inning 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Team/Inning 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Marshall 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 2 6 0
>>Virginia Tech 3 0 0 0 0 1 0 2 X 6 8 1
A nice baseball win for the Hokies Hokie Sports

We have a few offensive highlights for this one. Some of this and some of that for a really pretty normal paced baseball win.

In the Batters Box

Two-Baggers: Gavin Cross (1); Jack Hurley (1); Cade Hunter (1); Carson DeMartini (1)

Homers: Jack Hurley (1); Cade Hunter (1)

On the Bags

Steals: Christian Martin (1)

Nabbed Stealing: Nick Biddison (1)

Picked Off: Nick Biddison (1)

All things considered; this was a really solid weekend for the Hokie baseball team. They won a series on the road against a team that they rarely beat, even at home, and they had a solid performance from both pitching and batting in the Tuesday outing.

Next up is the #21 North Carolina State Wolfpack in our house. That’s going to be another tough series, can the Hokies grab two? Or even sweep? Tuesday the Hokies travel to Lynchburg to take on the Liberty Flames.

GO HOKIES!!!!